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  Learning a new prior: Light from above

Adams, W., Graf, E., & Ernst, M. (2006). Learning a new prior: Light from above. Perception, 35(ECVP Abstract Supplement), 115.

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 Creators:
Adams, WJ, Author
Graf, EW, Author
Ernst, MO1, 2, Author              
Affiliations:
1Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society, Spemannstrasse 38, 72076 Tübingen, DE, ou_1497794              
2Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society, Spemannstrasse 38, 72076 Tübingen, DE, ou_1497797              

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 Abstract: To interpret complex and ambiguous visual input, the visual system uses prior knowledge, or assumptions about the world. These 'priors' could be hard-wired, or learnt in response to statistical regularities in the environment. Here, we consider the 'light from above' prior used by the visual system to extract shape from shading. Observers viewed monocular disks with shading gradients at various orientations. Reported shape (convex or concave) as a function of stimulus orientation was used to recover each observer's assumed light position. During training, observers also 'touched' the disks. The haptic (felt) shape of the training stimuli was consistent with a light source shifted by ±1 30° from the observer's original assumed light position. After training, observers again judged the stimulus shape from purely visual information. Additionally, observers made lightness judgments of a Mach-card type stimulus, before and after haptic training with the concave/convex disk stimuli. Initially, our observers assumed a light position that was roughly overhead. However, after haptic feedback, observers learned to use a shifted light direction for their prior. Importantly, this learning was not specific to the trained task, but generalised such that it affected visual perception in a separate lightness judgment task.

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 Dates: 2006-08
 Publication Status: Published in print
 Pages: -
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 Rev. Type: -
 Identifiers: DOI: 10.1177/03010066060350S101
BibTex Citekey: AdamsGe2006
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Title: 29th European Conference on Visual Perception (ECVP 2006)
Place of Event: St. Petersburg, Russia
Start-/End Date: 2006-08-20 - 2006-08-26

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Title: Perception
Source Genre: Journal
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Publ. Info: London : Pion Ltd.
Pages: - Volume / Issue: 35 (ECVP Abstract Supplement) Sequence Number: - Start / End Page: 115 Identifier: ISSN: 0301-0066
CoNE: https://pure.mpg.de/cone/journals/resource/954925509369