Where Is Size in the Brain of the Beholder?

In: Multisensory Research
View More View Less
  • 1 Experimental Psychology & Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, UCL, London, UK

Purchase instant access (PDF download and unlimited online access):

$30.00

Despite advances in our understanding of how the brain represents visual space, it remains unresolved how the subjective experience of an object’s size arises. While responses in retinotopic cortex correlate with perceived size, this does not imply that those brain regions mediate perceived size differences. Here I describe how the percept of an object’s size could be generated in the brain and outline unanswered questions that future research should seek to address.

  • Afraz A., Pashkam M. V., Cavanagh P. (2010). Spatial heterogeneity in the perception of face and form attributes, Curr. Biol. 20, 21122116.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Anstis S. (1998). Picturing peripheral acuity, Perception 27, 817825.

  • Caparos S., Ahmed L., Bremner A. J., de Fockert J. W., Linnell K. J., Davidoff J. (2012). Exposure to an urban environment alters the local bias of a remote culture, Cognition 122, 8085.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Cass J. R., Spehar B. (2005). Dynamics of collinear contrast facilitation are consistent with long-range horizontal striate transmission, Vision Res. 45, 27282739.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Choplin J. M., Medin D. L. (1999). Similarity of the perimeters in the Ebbinghaus illusion, Percept. Psychophys. 61, 312.

  • Chouinard P. A., Noulty W. A., Sperandio I., Landry O. (2013). Global processing during the Müller-Lyer illusion is distinctively affected by the degree of autistic traits in the typical population, Exp. Brain Res. 230, 219231.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Dakin S., Frith U. (2005). Vagaries of visual perception in autism, Neuron 48, 497507.

  • Day M., Loffler G. (2009). The role of orientation and position in shape perception, J. Vis. 9(14), 117.

  • De Fockert J., Davidoff J., Fagot J., Parron C., Goldstein J. (2007). More accurate size contrast judgments in the Ebbinghaus illusion by a remote culture, J. Exp. Psychol. Hum. Percept. Perform. 33, 738742.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • De Fockert J. W., Caparos S., Linnell K. J., Davidoff J. (2011). Reduced distractibility in a remote culture, PloS One 6, e26337.

  • De Valois R. L., De Valois K. K. (1991). Vernier acuity with stationary moving Gabors, Vis. Res. 31, 16191626.

  • Deni J. R., Brigner W. L. (1997). Ebbinghaus illusion: effect of figural similarity upon magnitude of illusion when context elements are equal in perceived size, Percept. Mot. Skills 84, 11711175.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Doherty M. J., Tsuji H., Phillips W. A. (2008). The context sensitivity of visual size perception varies across cultures, Perception 37, 14261433.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Doherty M. J., Campbell N. M., Tsuji H., Phillips W. A. (2010). The Ebbinghaus illusion deceives adults but not young children, Dev. Sci. 13, 714721.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Dumoulin S. O., Wandell B. A. (2008). Population receptive field estimates in human visual cortex, NeuroImage 39, 647660.

  • Fang F., Boyaci H., Kersten D., Murray S. O. (2008). Attention-dependent representation of a size illusion in human V1, Curr. Biol. 18, 17071712.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Fischer J., Spotswood N., Whitney D. (2011). The emergence of perceived position in the visual system, J. Cogn. Neurosci. 23, 119136.

  • Franz V. H., Gegenfurtner K. R. (2008). Grasping visual illusions: consistent data and no dissociation, Cogn. Neuropsychol. 25, 920950.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Franz V. H., Scharnowski F., Gegenfurtner K. R. (2005). Illusion effects on grasping are temporally constant not dynamic, J. Exp. Psychol. Hum. Percept. Perform. 31, 13591378.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Genç E., Bergmann J., Singer W. & Kohler A. (in press). Surface area of early visual cortex predicts individual speed of traveling waves during binocular rivalry, Cereb. Cortex.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Goodale M. A. (2011). Transforming vision into action, Vis. Res. 51, 15671587.

  • Goodale M. A., Milner A. D. (1992). Separate visual pathways for perception and action, Trends Neurosci. 15, 2025.

  • Gregory R. L. (2008). Emmert’s Law and the moon illusion, Spat. Vis. 21, 407420.

  • Harvey B. M., Dumoulin S. O. (2011). The relationship between cortical magnification factor and population receptive field size in human visual cortex: constancies in cortical architecture, J. Neurosci. 31, 1360413612.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Harvey B. M., Klein B. P., Petridou N., Dumoulin S. O. (2013). Topographic representation of numerosity in the human parietal cortex, Science 341, 11231126.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Helmholtz H. (1867). Handbuch der Physiologischen Optik. Leopold Voss, Leipzig, Germany.

  • Hubel D. H., Wiesel T. N. (1962). Receptive fields, binocular interaction and functional architecture in the cat’s visual cortex, J. Physiol. 160, 106154.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hubel D. H., Wiesel T. N. (1968). Receptive fields and functional architecture of monkey striate cortex, J. Physiol. 195, 215243.

  • Hughes M., Fernandez-Duque D. (2010). Knowledge influences perception: evidence from the Ebbinghaus illusion, J. Vis. 10, 954954.

  • Jaeger T., Guenzel N. (2001). Similarity and lightness effects in Ebbinghaus illusion created by keyboard characters, Percept. Mot. Skills 92, 151156.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Jaeger T., Klahs K., Newton D. (2014). Ebbinghaus illusions with disc figures: effects of contextual size, separation, and lightness, Percept. Mot. Skills 118, 805817.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Jancke D., Chavane F., Naaman S., Grinvald A. (2004). Imaging cortical correlates of illusion in early visual cortex, Nature 428, 423426.

  • Jogan M., Stocker A. A. (2014). A new two-alternative forced choice method for the unbiased characterization of perceptual bias and discriminability, J. Vis. 14, 20.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Konen C. S., Kastner S. (2008). Two hierarchically organized neural systems for object information in human visual cortex, Nat. Neurosci. 11, 224231.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Konkle T., Oliva A. (2012). A real-world size organization of object responses in occipitotemporal cortex, Neuron 74, 11141124.

  • Kravitz D. J., Kriegeskorte N., Baker C. I. (2010). High-level visual object representations are constrained by position, Cereb. Cortex 20, 29162925.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Loffler G., Wilson H. R., Wilkinson F. (2003). Local and global contributions to shape discrimination, Vis. Res. 43, 519530.

  • Milner A. D., Goodale M. A. (2008). Two visual systems re-viewed, Neuropsychologia 46, 774785.

  • Morgan M., Dillenburger B., Raphael S., Solomon J. A. (2012). Observers can voluntarily shift their psychometric functions without losing sensitivity, Atten. Percept. Psychophys. 74, 185193.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Morgan M. J., Melmoth D., Solomon J. A. (2013). Linking hypotheses underlying Class A and Class B methods, Vis. Neurosci. 30, 197206.

  • Muise J. G., Brun V., Porelle M. (1997). Salience of central figure in the Ebbinghaus illusion: the Oreo cookie effect, Percept. Mot. Skills 85, 12031208.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Murray S. O., Boyaci H., Kersten D. (2006). The representation of perceived angular size in human primary visual cortex, Nat. Neurosci. 9, 429434.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ni A. M., Murray S. O., Horwitz G. D. (2014). Object-centered shifts of receptive field positions in monkey primary visual cortex, Curr. Biol. 24, 16531658.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Nishida S., Johnston A. (1999). Influence of motion signals on the perceived position of spatial pattern, Nature 397, 610612.

  • Onat S., Nortmann N., Rekauzke S., König P., Jancke D. (2011). Independent encoding of grating motion across stationary feature maps in primary visual cortex visualized with voltage-sensitive dye imaging, NeuroImage 55, 17631770.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Palmer C. R., Chen Y., Seidemann E. (2012). Uniform spatial spread of population activity in primate parafoveal V1, J. Neurophysiol. 107, 18571867.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Phillips W. A., Chapman K. L. S., Berry P. D. (2004). Size perception is less context-sensitive in males, Perception 33, 7986.

  • Pooresmaeili A., Arrighi R., Biagi L., Morrone M. C. (2013). Blood oxygen level-dependent activation of the primary visual cortex predicts size adaptation illusion, J. Neurosci. 33, 1599916008.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ramachandran V. S., Anstis S. M. (1990). Illusory displacement of equiluminous kinetic edges, Perception 19, 611616.

  • Schwarzkopf D. S., Rees G. (2013). Subjective size perception depends on central visual cortical magnification in human v1, PloS One 8, e60550.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Schwarzkopf D. S., Song C., Rees G. (2011). The surface area of human V1 predicts the subjective experience of object size, Nat. Neurosci. 14, 2830.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Sereno M. I., Dale A. M., Reppas J. B., Kwong K. K., Belliveau J. W., Brady T. J., Rosen B. R., Tootell R. B. (1995). Borders of multiple visual areas in humans revealed by functional magnetic resonance imaging, Science 268, 889893.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Snowden R. J. (1998). Shifts in perceived position following adaptation to visual motion, Curr. Biol. 8, 13431345.

  • Song C., Schwarzkopf D. S., Rees G. (2011). Interocular induction of illusory size perception, BMC Neurosci. 12, 27.

  • Song C., Schwarzkopf D. S., Lutti A., Li B., Kanai R., Rees G. (2013). Effective connectivity within human primary visual cortex predicts interindividual diversity in illusory perception, J. Neurosci. 33, 1878118791.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Sperandio I., Chouinard P. A., Goodale M. A. (2012a). Retinotopic activity in V1 reflects the perceived and not the retinal size of an afterimage, Nat. Neurosci. 15, 540542.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Sperandio I., Lak A., Goodale M. A. (2012b). Afterimage size is modulated by size-contrast illusions, J. Vis. 12(18), 110.

  • Thelen L., Watt R. (2010). The Ebbinghaus Illusion as a function of age: complete psychometric functions, J. Vis. 10, 487487.

  • Wang Y.-Z., Hess R. F. (2005). Contributions of local orientation and position features to shape integration, Vis. Res. 45, 13751383.

  • Whitney D., Bressler D. W. (2007). Spatially asymmetric response to moving patterns in the visual cortex: re-examining the local sign hypothesis, Vis. Res. 47, 5059.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Wokke M. E., Vandenbroucke A. R. E., Scholte H. S., Lamme V. A. F. (2013). Confuse your illusion: feedback to early visual cortex contributes to perceptual completion, Psychol. Sci. 24, 6371.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Yoon J. H., Maddock R. J., Rokem A., Silver M. A., Minzenberg M. J., Ragland J. D., Carter C. S. (2010). GABA concentration is reduced in visual cortex in schizophrenia and correlates with orientation-specific surround suppression, J. Neurosci. 30, 37773781.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Zuiderbaan W., Harvey B. M., Dumoulin S. O. (2012). Modeling center-surround configurations in population receptive fields using fMRI, J. Vis. 12, 10.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation

Content Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 116 58 4
Full Text Views 122 7 0
PDF Downloads 12 6 0