Change detection

Philosophical Explorations 53:245-277 (2002)
Five aspects of visual change detection are reviewed. The first concerns the concept of _change_ itself, in particular the ways it differs from the related notions of _motion_ and _difference_. The second involves the various methodological approaches that have been developed to study change detection; it is shown that under a variety of conditions observers are often unable to see large changes directly in front of them. Next, it is argued that this "change blindness" indicates that focused attention is needed to detect change, and that this can help map out the nature of visual attention. The fourth aspect concerns how these results affect our understanding of visual perception—for example, the proposal that a sparse, dynamic representation underlies much of our visual experience. Finally, a brief discussion is presented concerning the limits to our current understanding of change detection.
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