Apr 6, 2020

Natural image statistics at depth edges modulate perceptual stability

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Zeynap BasgozeE. A. Cooper


Binocular fusion relies on matching points in the two eyes that correspond to the same physical feature in the world. However, not all world features are binocularly visible. In particular, at depth edges parts of a scene are often visible to only one eye (so-called half occlusions). Accurate detection of these monocularly visible regions is likely to be important for stable visual perception. If monocular regions are not detected as such, the visual system may attempt to binocularly fuse non-corresponding points, which can result in unstable percepts. We investigated the hypothesis that the visual system capitalizes upon statistical regularities associated with depth edges in natural scenes to aid binocular fusion and facilitate perceptual stability. By sampling from a large set of stereoscopic natural image patches, we found evidence that monocularly visible regions near depth edges in natural scenes tend to have features more visually similar to the adjacent binocularly visible background region than to the adjacent binocularly visible foreground. The generality of these results was supported by a parametric study of three-dimensional (3D) viewing geometry in simulated environments. In two perceptual experiments, we examined...Continue Reading

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