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C. Alejandro Parraga, Arash Akbarinia; Colour constancy as a product of dynamic centre-surround adaptation.. Journal of Vision 2016;16(12):214. doi: 10.1167/16.12.214.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Colour constancy refers to the human visual system's ability to preserve the perceived colour of objects despite changes in the illumination. Its exact mechanisms are unknown, although a number of systems ranging from retinal to cortical and memory are thought to play important roles. The strength of the perceptual shift necessary to preserve these colours is usually estimated by the vectorial distances from an ideal match (or canonical illuminant). In this work we explore how much of the colour constancy phenomenon could be explained by well-known physiological properties of V1 and V2 neurons whose receptive fields (RF) vary according to the contrast and orientation of surround stimuli. Indeed, it has been shown that both RF size and the normalization occurring between centre and surround in cortical neurons depend on the local properties of surrounding stimuli. Our stating point is the construction of a computational model which includes this dynamical centre-surround adaptation by means of two overlapping asymmetric Gaussian kernels whose variances are adjusted to the contrast of surrounding pixels to represent the changes in RF size of cortical neurons and the weights of their respective contributions are altered according to differences in centre-surround contrast and orientation. The final output of the model is obtained after convolving an image with this dynamical operator and an estimation of the illuminant is obtained by considering the contrast of the far surround. We tested our algorithm on naturalistic stimuli from several benchmark datasets. Our results show that although our model does not require any training, its performance against the state-of-the-art is highly competitive, even outperforming learning-based algorithms in some cases. Indeed, these results are very encouraging if we consider that they were obtained with the same parameters for all datasets (i.e. just like the human visual system operates).
Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2016
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