Abstract

We analyzed how the visual response to orientation modulation in texture patterns varied as a function of the magnitude of orientation contrast. Using a contrast-discrimination technique, we measured threshold increments of orientation contrast (the orientation contrast required for discriminating between two textures) at various pedestal-orientation contrasts. The orientation-contrast-response function estimated for a step-orientation contrast, which produces a vivid percept of surface boundaries, saturated at approximately 30° (experiment 1). The saturation was still evident even when the strength of the step-orientation contrast was reduced by orientation noise (experiment 2), but no strong saturation was found for textures that did not produce a vivid percept of surface boundaries (experiment 3). These results are consistent with the notion that orientation-based texture segregation involves the generation of a neural representation of the surface boundary whose strength is nearly independent of the magnitude of orientation contrast.

© 2001 Optical Society of America

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