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Bayesian modeling of cue interaction: bistability in stereoscopic slant perception

Our two eyes receive different views of a visual scene, and the resulting binocular disparities enable us to reconstruct its three-dimensional layout. However, the visual environment is also rich in monocular depth cues. We examined the resulting percept when observers view a scene in which there are large conflicts between the surface slant signaled by binocular disparities and the slant signaled by monocular perspective. For a range of disparity-perspective cue conflicts, many observers experience bistability: They are able to perceive two distinct slants and to flip between the two percepts in a controlled way. We present a Bayesian model that describes the quantitative aspects of perceived slant on the basis of the likelihoods of both perspective and disparity slant information combined with prior assumptions about the shape and orientation of objects in the scene. Our Bayesian approach can be regarded as an overarching framework that allows researchers to study all cue integration aspects-including perceptual decisions--in a unified manner.



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