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The Oxford Compendium of Visual Illusions$
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Arthur G. Shapiro and Dejan Todorovic

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780199794607

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199794607.001.0001

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Motion Illusions in Man and Machine

Motion Illusions in Man and Machine

(p.79) Chapter 6 Motion Illusions in Man and Machine
The Oxford Compendium of Visual Illusions

Cornelia Fermüller

Oxford University Press

At the level of mathematical abstraction, computing image motion amounts to an estimation problem and can be analyzed using the tools of statistics and signal processing. As shown in this chapter, intrinsic limitations to the estimation processes make it impossible to derive veridical estimates for all images. Image motion is estimated erroneously, and as a result higher level processes compute erroneous three-dimensional motion and moving scenes. Specifically, two limitations are discussed: (a) due to noise in image data, there is statistical bias that affects anisotropic patterns and (2) the filters computing changes in time are asymmetric (causal), using data only from the past but not the future, and misestimate on locally asymmetric intensity signals of certain spatial frequencies. Since these limitations are not an artifact of the hardware but are inherent to the computations, they will affect any system and thus create illusions in man and machine.

Keywords:   image motion, estimation process, filters, statistical bias, noise, asymmetric, computations

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