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Neural Computation (2018) 30 (12): 3355–3392.
Published: 01 December 2018
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A common practice to account for psychophysical biases in vision is to frame them as consequences of a dynamic process relying on optimal inference with respect to a generative model. The study presented here details the complete formulation of such a generative model intended to probe visual motion perception with a dynamic texture model. It is derived in a set of axiomatic steps constrained by biological plausibility. We extend previous contributions by detailing three equivalent formulations of this texture model. First, the composite dynamic textures are constructed by the random aggregation of warped patterns, which can be viewed as three-dimensional gaussian fields. Second, these textures are cast as solutions to a stochastic partial differential equation (sPDE). This essential step enables real-time, on-the-fly texture synthesis using time-discretized autoregressive processes. It also allows for the derivation of a local motion-energy model, which corresponds to the log likelihood of the probability density. The log likelihoods are essential for the construction of a Bayesian inference framework. We use the dynamic texture model to psychophysically probe speed perception in humans using zoom-like changes in the spatial frequency content of the stimulus. The human data replicate previous findings showing perceived speed to be positively biased by spatial frequency increments. A Bayesian observer who combines a gaussian likelihood centered at the true speed and a spatial frequency dependent width with a “slow-speed prior” successfully accounts for the perceptual bias. More precisely, the bias arises from a decrease in the observer's likelihood width estimated from the experiments as the spatial frequency increases. Such a trend is compatible with the trend of the dynamic texture likelihood width.
Includes: Supplementary data
Neural Computation (2012) 24 (10): 2726–2750.
Published: 01 October 2012
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In low-level sensory systems, it is still unclear how the noisy information collected locally by neurons may give rise to a coherent global percept. This is well demonstrated for the detection of motion in the aperture problem: as luminance of an elongated line is symmetrical along its axis, tangential velocity is ambiguous when measured locally. Here, we develop the hypothesis that motion-based predictive coding is sufficient to infer global motion. Our implementation is based on a context-dependent diffusion of a probabilistic representation of motion. We observe in simulations a progressive solution to the aperture problem similar to physio-logy and behavior. We demonstrate that this solution is the result of two underlying mechanisms. First, we demonstrate the formation of a tracking behavior favoring temporally coherent features independent of their texture. Second, we observe that incoherent features are explained away, while coherent information diffuses progressively to the global scale. Most previous models included ad hoc mechanisms such as end-stopped cells or a selection layer to track specific luminance-based features as necessary conditions to solve the aperture problem. Here, we have proved that motion-based predictive coding, as it is implemented in this functional model, is sufficient to solve the aperture problem. This solution may give insights into the role of prediction underlying a large class of sensory computations.
Neural Computation (2010) 22 (7): 1812–1836.
Published: 01 July 2010
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Neurons in the input layer of primary visual cortex in primates develop edge-like receptive fields. One approach to understanding the emergence of this response is to state that neural activity has to efficiently represent sensory data with respect to the statistics of natural scenes. Furthermore, it is believed that such an efficient coding is achieved using a competition across neurons so as to generate a sparse representation, that is, where a relatively small number of neurons are simultaneously active. Indeed, different models of sparse coding, coupled with Hebbian learning and homeostasis, have been proposed that successfully match the observed emergent response. However, the specific role of homeostasis in learning such sparse representations is still largely unknown. By quantitatively assessing the efficiency of the neural representation during learning, we derive a cooperative homeostasis mechanism that optimally tunes the competition between neurons within the sparse coding algorithm. We apply this homeostasis while learning small patches taken from natural images and compare its efficiency with state-of-the-art algorithms. Results show that while different sparse coding algorithms give similar coding results, the homeostasis provides an optimal balance for the representation of natural images within the population of neurons. Competition in sparse coding is optimized when it is fair. By contributing to optimizing statistical competition across neurons, homeostasis is crucial in providing a more efficient solution to the emergence of independent components.