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Carlo Fantoni, James D. Hilger, Walter Gerbino, Philip J. Kellman; Surface interpolation and 3D relatability. Journal of Vision 2008;8(7):29. doi: 10.1167/8.7.29.
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Although the role of surface-level processes has been demonstrated, visual interpolation models often emphasize contour relationships. We report two experiments on geometric constraints governing 3D interpolation between surface patches without visible edges. Observers were asked to classify pairs of planar patches specified by random dot disparities and visible through circular apertures (aligned or misaligned) in a frontoparallel occluder. On each trial, surfaces appeared in parallel or converging planes with vertical (in Experiment 1) or horizontal (in Experiment 2) tilt and variable amounts of slant. We expected the classification task to be facilitated when patches were perceived as connected. We found enhanced sensitivity and speed for 3D relatable vs. nonrelatable patches. Here 3D relatability does not involve oriented edges but rather inducing patches' orientations computed from stereoscopic information. Performance was markedly affected by slant anisotropy: both sensitivity and speed were worse for patches with horizontal tilt. We found nearly identical advantages of 3D relatability on performance, suggesting an isotropic unit formation process. Results are interpreted as evidence that inducing slant constrains surface interpolation in the absence of explicit edge information: 3D contour and surface interpolation processes share common geometric constraints as formalized by 3D relatability.
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