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The perceived transmittance of inhomogeneous surfaces and media Barton L. Anderson a,*, Manish Singh b

Summary: The perceived transmittance of inhomogeneous surfaces and media
Barton L. Anderson a,*, Manish Singh b
, Jeanette Meng c
University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
Department of Psychology and Center for Cognitive Science, Rutgers University, New Brunswick Campus, Piscataway, NJ, USA
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, USA
Received 19 August 2005; received in revised form 7 November 2005
A series of experiments was performed to determine how the visual system computes the transmittance of inhomogeneous surfaces
and media. Previous work (Anderson, B. L. (1999) Stereoscopic surface perception. Neuron, 26, 919928; Anderson, B. L. (2003) The
role of occlusion in the perception of depth, lightness, and opacity. Psychological Review, 110, 762784) has suggested that the visual
system employs a transmittance anchoring principle in determining when transparency is perceived. This principle states that the visual
system interprets the highest contrast region along contours and surfaces as a region in plain view and uses this anchor as a reference
point for transparency computations. In particular, recent work has shown that the transmittance of homogeneous transparent surfaces
is well described by a ratio of contrasts model (Singh, M., & Anderson, B. L. (2002). Toward a perceptual theory of transparency.
Psychological Review, 109, 492519). In this model, the transmittance of a transparent surface is determined by the contrast of a trans-
parent image region normalized by the contrast of the region in plain view. Here, a series of experiments is reported that assesses this


Source: Anderson, Barton L. - School of Psychology, University of Sydney
Singh, Manish - Department of Psychology, Rutgers University


Collections: Biology and Medicine