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An important component of successful visual percep-tion is the ability to keep track of information as belong-

Summary: An important component of successful visual percep-
tion is the ability to keep track of information as belong-
ing to the same entities from one moment to the next. As
an observer moves about the environment, and the envi-
ronment about the observer, objects need to somehow be
linked into persisting representations. While this process
of object persistence is critical, it is not obvious how best
it should be accomplished. On one hand, it would be too
taxing on our visual system to remember every detail from
one view of the world to the next, such that each view can
be compared with the previous one. From what is known
of attentional processing and memory, even a limited ver-
sion of such a system is just not feasible. However, on the
other hand, it seems maladaptive to encode nothing, sim-
ply letting the outside world act as its own memory. While
this is a philosophical stance (e.g., O'Regan & Noe, 2001)
and can be used as a successful strategy when implement-
ing scene perception for robotic locomotion (Michels,
Saxena, & Ng, 2005), clearly some amount information is
stored in memory at any given moment.Yet, the questions


Source: Alvarez, George A. - Department of Psychology, Harvard University
Mitroff, Stephen - Center for Cognitive Neuroscience, Duke University


Collections: Biology and Medicine