The energy model (Pollen & Ronner, 1983; Adelson & Bergen, 1985) for a complex cell in the visual cortex is investigated theoretically. The energy model describes the output of a complex cell as the squared sum of outputs of two linear operators. An information-maximization problem to determine the two linear operators is investigated assuming the low signal-to-noise ratio limit and a localization term in the objective function. As a result, two linear operators characterized by a quadrature pair of Gabor functions are obtained as solutions. The result agrees with the energy model, which well describes the shift-invariant and orientation-selective responses of actual complex cells, and thus suggests that complex cells are optimally designed from an information-theoretic viewpoint.

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