Scientific Lectures //
Title: Visual Adaptation and the Natural Visual Environment
Dr. Michael Webster - Department of Psychology and Center for Integrative Neuroscience at University of Nevada, Reno
Presented: May 21, 2013
ABSTRACT: The visual system is highly dynamic and constantly adapting its responses to the scenes we are currently viewing. I will discuss experiments where we have explored how this adaptation compensates perception for variations in the sensitivity of the observer, and for variations in the visual characteristics of the environment. To the extent that these adjustments can be plausibly modeled, images from novel environments can be “pre-adapted” to match the current state of the observer, obviating the need for observers to adapt. These images provide a novel method for exploring long-term consequences of visual adaptation and for optimizing images for different visual tasks.
BIOGRAPHY: Michael Webster is Foundation Professor of Psychology and Biomedical Engineering at the University of Nevada, Reno and Director of the NIH NIGMS COBRE for Integrative Neuroscience. He received his PhD in Biological Psychology from UC Berkeley in 1988 and was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Cambridge before moving to UNR in 1994. His work focuses on plasticity in the human visual system and how vision is shaped by the color and spatial characteristics of the natural visual environment, and has been funded since 1994 by the National Eye Institute
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