Correlation Engine 2.0
Clear Search sequence regions

We investigated observers' performance in detecting and discriminating visual word forms as a function of target size and retinal eccentricity. The contrast threshold of visual words was measured with a spatial two-alternative forced-choice paradigm and a PSI adaptive method. The observers were to indicate which of two sides contained a stimulus in the detection task, and which contained a real character (as opposed to a pseudo- or non-character) in the discrimination task. When the target size was sufficiently small, the detection threshold of a character decreased as its size increased, with a slope of -1/2 on log-log coordinates, up to a critical size at all eccentricities and for all stimulus types. The discrimination threshold decreased with target size with a slope of -1 up to a critical size that was dependent on stimulus type and eccentricity. Beyond that size, the threshold decreased with a slope of -1/2 on log-log coordinates before leveling out. The data was well fit by a spatial summation model that contains local receptive fields (RFs) and a summation across these filters within an attention window. Our result implies that detection is mediated by local RFs smaller than any tested stimuli and thus detection performance is dominated by summation across receptive fields. On the other hand, discrimination is dominated by a summation within a local RF in the fovea but a cross RF summation in the periphery. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Chien-Hui Kao, Chien-Chung Chen. Seeing visual word forms: spatial summation, eccentricity and spatial configuration. Vision research. 2012 Jun 1;62:57-65

Expand section icon Mesh Tags

PMID: 22497868

View Full Text