Chapter 3: Perception
- Visual Agnosia: A deficiency in the ability to recognize visual information despite
being able to see.
- Associative Agnosia: A form of visual agnosia marked by a difficulty naming
- Time Spaces: The perceptual experience of time units such as days of the week
or months of the year as occupying special locations outside of the body.
- Perception: Processing sensory information such that it produces a meaningful
understanding of the information.
- Stimulus: An entity in the external environment that can be perceived by
- Theory of Ecological Optics: The proposal that perception involves directly
absorbing the visual information present in the environment.
- Ambient Optical Array (AOA): All the visual information that is present at a
particular point of view.
- Texture Gradients: Gradual changes in the pattern of a surface that is normally
assumed to be uniform, which provides information about surface
characteristics such as whether the surface is receding or curved.
- Topological Breakage: The discontinuity created by the intersection of two
- Scatter-Reflection: The degree to which light scatters when reflected from a
- Transformation: In the theory proposed by Gibson, the change of optical
information hitting the eye when the observer moves through the environment.
- Optic Flow Field: The movement of objects or of the observer through the
environment produces changes in what is seen.
- Percept: Meaningful interpretation of sensory information.
- Memory Trace: The trace that an experience leaves in the brain.
- Hffding Function: When an experience makes contact with a memory trace,
resulting in recognition.
- Pattern Recognition: The ability to recognize an event as an instance of a
particular category of events.
- Template: A model against which a stimulus is compared to determine whether
it belongs to a particular category.
- Prototype: A model that posses all the typical characteristics of its class.
- Template-Matching Theory: Comparing a stimulus with template; when they
match the stimulus is recognized as belonging to that category. - Multiple-Trace Memory Model: Traces of each individual experience are
recorded in memory. No matter how often a particular kind of event is
experienced, a memory trace of the event is recorded each time.
- Probe: Secondary memory can be activated by means of a probe from primary
- Echo: When a probe goes out from primary to secondary memory, memory
traces are activated to the extent that they are similar to the probe.
- Feature Detection theory: Detecting patterns on the basis of their individual
- Pandemonium: A model of pattern recognition consisting of three levels: data,
cognitive demons, and decision demons.
- Feature: A component or characteristic of a stimulus.
- Cognitive Demon: A feature detector in the pandemonium model that decides
whether the stimulus matches its pattern.
- Decision Demon: A feature detector in the pandemonium model that
determines which pattern is being recognized.
- Contrast Energy: The degree of contrast between letters in a word and the
background they appear on leading to the relative ease with which a stimulus
can be discriminated from the background against which it is displayed.
- Sequelching: The tendency of the nervous system to inhibit the processing of
- Geons: The basic geometric shapes that comprise objects.
- Recognition by Components (RBC): A model of perception based on subdividing
objects into a basic set of geometric shapes.
- Recoverability: the degree to which geons can be made out in a degraded image
of an object.
- Top-Down (User-Driven) Processing: When perception (or other cognitive
processes) is driven by expectations and prior knowledge.
- Context Effects: The influence that the situation plays on the perception of a
- Bottom-Up (Data-Driven) Processing: When perception (or other cognitive
processes) results from the combination of individual pieces of sensory
- Moon Illusion: The tendency for the moon to appear larger when on the horizon
than when high in the sky.
- Apparent-Distance Theory: An explanation for the moon illusion; it posits that
the moon on the horizon appears larger because distance cues lead the
observer to perceive it as being nearer that the zenith moon.
- Angle-of-Regard Theory: A theory developed to explain the moon illusion, which
states that the zenith moon appears smaller than the horizon moon because a
person has to raise his or her eyes or head to view it.
- Jumbled word Effect: The ability to read words in sentences despite having
mixed up letters in the middle of some words. - Parallel Distributed processing (PDP): A model of perception that proposes that
different features are processed at the same time by different units connected
together in a network.
- Word Superiority Effect: It is easier to identify a letter (e.g. D) if it appears in a
word (e.g. WORD) than if it appears alone.
- Empirical Theory of Colour Vision: The proposal that colour perception involves
not only the processing of wavelengths of light but also the influence of prior
experiences about how different lighting conditions affect the appearance of the
colours of objects.
- McGurk Effect: The auditory experience of the syllable da when seeing a mouth
silently saying ga while the same time hearing a voice say ba.
- Change Blindness: The common failure of people to notice changes to an object
- Grand illusion of Perception: The experience of a clear and detailed picture of
the world in ones visual field.
- Feature Integration Theory (FIT): Before we can attend to objects in the world
we must extract the features that make up these objects.
- Preattentive Processing: Automatic extraction of features before an object can
- Feature Binding: The combining of visual features by attention to form whole
- Attentive Processing: Combining features into a whole object through attention.
- Pop-Out: Grab attention.
- Blind Spot: A region in the eye where the optic nerve leaves the retina; it does
not contain any photoreceptors.
- Perceptual Completion (Filling-In):
- Gestalt Psychology: A branch of psychology that focuses on dealing with wholes
rather than parts.
- Bi-Stable Figures: Images from which to separate percepts can be formed.
- Figure-Ground Segmentation: Perceptual organization of a scene such that one
element becomes the foreground (figure) and the other element(s) become(s)
the background (ground).
- Holistic: Focusing on the whole configuration of an object.
- Atomistic: Focusing on the features or components of objects.
- Organizational Principles: The rules that explain the ways in which people are
able to perceive whole objects or events from individual parts.
- Group: The way in which individual parts are combined to form a whole.
- Principle of Experience: A principle of Gestalt organization stating that elements
are grouped based on the prior experience and knowledge or the observer.
- Denotivity: the degree to which an object is meaningful and familiar to an
- Principle of Proximity: Things that are near one another are grouped together.
- Principle of Closure: Things that form closed shapes are grouped together.