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Spatial size limits in stereoscopic vision

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image of Spatial Vision
For more content, see Multisensory Research and Seeing and Perceiving.

Stereoscopic vision is extremely precise in detecting minute differences between adjacent depth planes, but quite imprecise in estimating absolute depth. In this paper, we address the issue of the spatial acuity (and not the stereo acuity) of stereopsis. Static RDS (random dot stereograms) stimuli were used to find the spatial grain in which human stereoscopic vision operates. Using psychophysical experiments it was found that foveally, stimuli smaller than 8' cannot be accurately perceived. For other eccentricities, it was found that this threshold is inversely proportional to the Cortical Magnification factor. We interpret this spatial size limit, which is an order of magnitude larger than visual spatial acuity, as an indication that stereopsis is an area based comparison rather than a point process, and discuss the relations between the cortical 'patch' size that corresponds to this 8' limit and Ocular Dominance Columns.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Computer Science, Tel Aviv University, 69978 Tel Aviv, Israel


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