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Proceedings Paper

Effect of spatial frequency content of the background on visual detection of a known target
Author(s): William M. Gentles; Thanh Nguyen; William K.B. Ho; Curtis B. Caldwell; Lisa E. Ehrlich; Charlene Leonhardt; Rick Reed
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Paper Abstract

It is known that the human visual system has varying sensitivity to different spatial frequencies. We are attempting to develop a better understanding of the interaction between the target and surround in a visual detection task, by changing the properties of the surround in frequency space. In our experiments, a known target is superimposed on a bandwidth- limited Gaussian noise background. The size, brightness, and position of the target are kept constant. The experimental design is a `Signal Known Exactly' ROC experiment. For each background the observer knows that there is a 50% probability that the target is present. The observer is asked to state a confidence level from 1 to 5 that a target is present in a given background. Detection performance for backgrounds with different frequency content is compared using the area under the ROC curve. The results of these experiments indicate that performance varies markedly as the frequency content of the background is changed. Observer performance dropped to a minimum when the background frequency was close to the frequency of maximum contrast sensitivity of the human visual system.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 June 1992
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 1652, Medical Imaging VI: Image Processing, (1 June 1992); doi: 10.1117/12.59442
Show Author Affiliations
William M. Gentles, Sunnybrook Health Science Ctr./Univ. of Toronto (Canada)
Thanh Nguyen, Sunnybrook Health Science Ctr./Univ. of Toronto (Canada)
William K.B. Ho, Sunnybrook Health Science Ctr./Univ. of Toronto (Canada)
Curtis B. Caldwell, Sunnybrook Health Science Ctr./Univ. of Toronto (Canada)
Lisa E. Ehrlich, Sunnybrook Health Science Ctr./Univ. of Toronto (Canada)
Charlene Leonhardt, Sunnybrook Health Science Ctr./Univ. of Toronto (Canada)
Rick Reed, Sunnybrook Health Science Ctr./Univ. of Toronto (Canada)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1652:
Medical Imaging VI: Image Processing
Murray H. Loew, Editor(s)

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