September 2017
Volume 17, Issue 10
Open Access
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   August 2017
Estimation of gloss and shape from vision and touch.
Author Affiliations
  • Wendy Adams
    Department of Psychology, University of Southampton
  • Gizem Küçükoğlu
    Department of Psychology, New York University
  • Michael Landy
    Department of Psychology, New York University
Journal of Vision August 2017, Vol.17, 359. doi:
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      Wendy Adams, Gizem Küçükoğlu, Michael Landy; Estimation of gloss and shape from vision and touch.. Journal of Vision 2017;17(10):359. doi:

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Image cues to gloss are affected by both gloss and shape. For this reason, an optimal observer would jointly estimate gloss and shape. Consistent with this, we have shown that underestimation of depth is associated with overestimation of gloss, and vice versa. If observers jointly estimate shape and gloss, using all available information, then shape cues from another modality, such as haptics (touch) should modulate perceived gloss. Observers viewed and touched visual-haptic stimuli that independently varied in depth and gloss. The shape information provided by touch was either consistent with vision, or differed by ±15%. On each trial, observers reported both perceived depth and perceived gloss, with reference to two sets of physical stimuli: one varied in gloss (painted ping pong balls with varying mixtures of matte and glossy varnish), the other in depth (3-D printed arrays of random-depth ellipses similar to the visually and haptically rendered stimuli). As expected, perceived depth increased as a function of both visually and haptically defined depth; observers integrated the depth information provided by the two modalities. In addition, and in line with previous findings, perceived gloss was affected by both visually rendered gloss and visually rendered depth: perceived gloss increased with visually-defined depth. However, the haptic depth perturbations had little effect on perceived gloss. Subtle changes in quantitative depth, signalled by a non-visual modality do not appear to modulate the perceived glossiness of a surface.

Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2017


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