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Proceedings Paper

Importance of perceptual representation in the visual control of action
Author(s): Jack M. Loomis; Andrew C. Beall; Jonathan W. Kelly; Kristen L. Macuga
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Paper Abstract

In recent years, many experiments have demonstrated that optic flow is sufficient for visually controlled action, with the suggestion that perceptual representations of 3-D space are superfluous. In contrast, recent research in our lab indicates that some visually controlled actions, including some thought to be based on optic flow, are indeed mediated by perceptual representations. For example, we have demonstrated that people are able to perform complex spatial behaviors, like walking, driving, and object interception, in virtual environments which are rendered visible solely by cyclopean stimulation (random-dot cinematograms). In such situations, the absence of any retinal optic flow that is correlated with the objects and surfaces within the virtual environment means that people are using stereo-based perceptual representations to perform the behavior. The fact that people can perform such behaviors without training suggests that the perceptual representations are likely the same as those used when retinal optic flow is present. Other research indicates that optic flow, whether retinal or a more abstract property of the perceptual representation, is not the basis for postural control, because postural instability is related to perceived relative motion between self and the visual surroundings rather than to optic flow, even in the abstract sense.

Paper Details

Date Published: 18 March 2005
PDF: 6 pages
Proc. SPIE 5666, Human Vision and Electronic Imaging X, (18 March 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.610847
Show Author Affiliations
Jack M. Loomis, Univ. of California/Santa Barbara (United States)
Andrew C. Beall, Univ. of California/Santa Barbara (United States)
Jonathan W. Kelly, Univ. of California/Santa Barbara (United States)
Kristen L. Macuga, Univ. of California/Santa Barbara (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5666:
Human Vision and Electronic Imaging X
Bernice E. Rogowitz; Thrasyvoulos N. Pappas; Scott J. Daly, Editor(s)

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