Friday, December 3, 2010

Findley & Gilchrist on Active Vision 2

From Active Vision, p. 1
A Martian ethologist observing humans using their visual systems would almost certainly include in their report back: 'they move these small globes around a lot and that's how they see'.
     The starting point for this book is an acceptance of the premise of that ethologist. We believe that movements of the eyeballs are a fundamental feature of vision. This viewpoint is not widely current. Many texts on vision do not even mention that the eye can move. In this chapter, we try to outline the reasons why most work on vision pays so little attention to the mobility of the eyes and set out how we feel this balance should be redressed.
As I mentioned earlier, the parts of their book that I have read have been very interesting.  My only reservation is the extent to which they may overstate the heterodoxy of their approach.  One can get a sense of the extent to which orthodoxy embraces their view by a quick survey of the experimental work they discuss.  There is a lot of it and they have not done it all.  There seems to me to be a good body of research on active vision.  So, it seems to me that they are (understandably) just being  a bit overly enthusiastic in marketing their work.

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