A multi-scale model of edge coding based on normalized Gaussian derivative filters successfully predicts perceived scale (blur) for a wide variety of edge profiles [Georgeson, M. A., May, K. A., Freeman, T. C. A., & Hesse, G. S. (in press). From filters to features: Scale-space analysis of edge and blur coding in human vision. Journal of Vision]. Our model spatially differentiates the luminance profile, half-wave rectifies the 1st derivative, and then differentiates twice more, to give the 3rd derivative of all regions with a positive gradient. This process is implemented by a set of Gaussian derivative filters with a range of scales. Peaks in the inverted normalized 3rd derivative across space and scale indicate the positions and scales of the edges. The edge contrast can be estimated from the height of the peak. The model provides a veridical estimate of the scale and contrast of edges that have a Gaussian integral profile. Therefore, since scale and contrast are independent stimulus parameters, the model predicts that the perceived value of either of these parameters should be unaffected by changes in the other. This prediction was found to be incorrect: reducing the contrast of an edge made it look sharper, and increasing its scale led to a decrease in the perceived contrast. Our model can account for these effects when the simple half-wave rectifier after the 1st derivative is replaced by a smoothed threshold function described by two parameters. For each subject, one pair of parameters provided a satisfactory fit to the data from all the experiments presented here and in the accompanying paper [May, K. A. & Georgeson, M. A. (2007). Added luminance ramp alters perceived edge blur and contrast: A critical test for derivative-based models of edge coding. Vision Research, 47, 1721-1731]. Thus, when we allow for the visual system's insensitivity to very shallow luminance gradients, our multi-scale model can be extended to edge coding over a wide range of contrasts and blurs. © 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Bibliographical noteErratum published in May, K. A., & Georgeson, M. A. (2010). Erratum to Blurred edges look faint, and faint edges look sharp: The effect of a gradient threshold in a multi-scale edge coding model [Vision Res. 47, 13, (2007), 1705-1720]. Vision research, 50(10). 10.1016/j.visres.2010.02.018
- Gaussian derivatives
- human vision