4th Annual Dinner and Demo Night

Monday, May 8, 2006, 6:30 -9:30 pm, G.WIZ Science Museum

Please join us Monday night at the G.WIZ Science Museum for the 4th Annual VSS Demo Night, with a barbecue and beverages to accompany the demonstrations.

Richard O. Brown and Shinsuke Shimojo have curated 20 demonstrations of visual phenomena by VSS members, in a variety of formats and scales, illustrating the important roles demonstrations play in vision research and education. These demonstrations will be distributed throughout G.WIZ, amongst the museum’s existing interactive scientific exhibits, including 30 exhibits on physics and visual perception on loan from the Exploratorium.

No registration required. Wear your VSS badge for entry. Guests and family members of all ages welcome.

Schedule of Events
6:30 – 8:00 pm Complimentary BBQ served on the grass at the back of G.WIZ
6:30 – 8:00 pm Outside bar open – Beer and wine for $3; sodas and water complimentary
7:00 – 9:30 pm Demos open inside G.WIZ
7:00 – 9:30 pm Inside bar open – Beer and wine $3; sodas and water complimentary
8:00 – 9:30 pm Complimentary dessert and coffee served

Demonstration of Cue Recruitment

Benjamin Backus, Qi Haijiang, University of Pennsylvania
When a visual signal is paired with trusted visual cues, it can become a cue itself. This demo illustrates the effect by making the apparent 3D rotation of a Necker cube contingent on stimulus position.

Embodying Bottom-Up Visual Attention in a Robotic Monkey Head

David J. Berg, Lior Elazary, Laurent Itti, University of Southern California
A robotic monkey head with a mounted camera will compute salient/surprising locations in its environment and make combined head/eye movements toward them. The monkey will look around the room at interesting things or people as they pass by. The robot has several controllable facial features which create a more natural and entertaining experience.

Demonstration of Curved Visual Space, and Project LITE Vision Interactive software

Kenneth Brecher, Boston University
Novel anamorphic demos combining art, physics and visual perception to explore the curvature of visual space will be presented. Also, Project LITE – Over 250 visual perception applets.

Strobe Room with Balls and Cell Phones

Richard O. Brown, The Exploratorium
A dark room will be illuminated only by slow (~5Hz) stroboscopic flashes. Experience how difficult it becomes to play a simple game of catch under these conditions. Also, bring your cell phone or other glowing objects for fun with the flash-lag effect.

The Touch of Light

Frank H. Durgin, Swarthmore College
Observer places hand into a box, only to see it replaced, via mirror, with a rubber hand. The rubber hand is “stroked” with a laser-pointer light. Most observers feel thermal or tingly sensations from the light. The sensations are localized to the corresponding surface of their own unseen hand.

The Bicycle Illusion: A True Story of Sidewalk Science

James T. Enns, Michael Dodd, Michael Masson, University of British Columbia
The apparent path of a moving object is influenced by the shape of stationary forms at low levels of acuity. This illusion is dissociated from more familiar illusions of induced motion.

Demo With White Disk and Spotlights

Alan Gilchrist, Rutgers University
A disk of white paper and a projected circle of light on a black background can be indistinguishable, with both appearing as white paper disks. But when the spotlight is moved so as to partially overlap the white paper disk, the percept changes dramatically. One of the two disks appears to be composed of illumination, while the other can continue to appear as white paper. But either disk can appear as the spotlight, and the display is reversible. The true state of affairs can be easily revealed, by various methods, such as waving a hand directly in front of the display, and this typically produces visual surprise in the observer

Breathing Light Illusion and Other New Motion Illusions

Simone Gori, Boston University
The Breathing Light Illusion is a challenge for the constant of size and for the constant of color. The Gori-Hamburger Illusion (Rotating Tilted Lines Illusion) is a static pattern that elicits illusory motion. Moreover, other variations of the previous illusions and different new illusions will be shown during the demo.

Enigmatic Variations of Illusory Streaming Motion

Kai Hamburger, Justus Liebig, University Giessen
Novel variations of streaming motion in static patterns (as observed in Leviant’s Enigma figure) will be presented.

Why Images Look Right When Viewed From the Wrong Place

David Hoffman, Ahna R. Girshick, & Martin S. Banks, University of California Berkeley
When a picture is viewed from the center of projection, the retinal image is the same as that from the original scene. As the picture surface is rotated, the retinal image distorts. When one looks monocularly through a pinhole, objects appear to change shape as the picture-surface slant changes. However, when one views binocularly without an aperture, perceived object shape remains stable.

The Attentional Centrifuge

Alex Holcombe, Patrick Cavanagh, Harvard University
The “attentional centrifuge” separates the human visual computations that occur at a local retinotopic stage from those that occur at more global integration stages. Things that cannot be seen with an alternating non-spinning display suddenly become visible when the centrifuge is activated and global processing stages are activated.

Boolean Nature of Conscious Access

Liqiang Huang, Hal Pashler, Anne Treisman, Princeton University
These are the demos from a paper we are revising for Psychological review. (1) What visual contents can we consciously access at one moment? (2) How can we voluntarily select what to access? Boolean map theory offers a unified interpretation of a wide variety of visual-attention phenomena usually treated in separate literatures.

Luminance Re-Mapping for the Control of Apparent Material

Isamu Motoyoshi, Shin’ya Nishida, NTT Communication Science Labs, Japan
I will present a technique that can dramatically alter the apparent material of object surfaces from glossy opaque ones to translucent, metallic, or even sking-like ones. The method is base on a very simple manipulation of the image histogram.

Monochromacy in Photopic Vision

Ken Nakayama, Harvard University
This exercise in monochromatic vision is designed to stimulate thinking about our color experience which we otherwise take for granted in our usual multi-spectral environment. Method: Sodium lamps, perhaps one of the most common sources of highway and street lighting, is practically monochromatic. We will provide illumination from two street lamps, plus some colored objects, including appetizing foods. VSS members are encouraged to bring in their own colored objects.

Proper-/Reverse-spectives – “Paper-thin reality”

Thomas V. Papathomas, Rutgers University
Hughes’s “reverspectives” are stationary stimuli that appear to move as observers move in front of them. I present an interesting variant: Rotating “proper-/reverse-spectives” are paper-thin non-planar objects that contain both protruding illusory reverspectives, and hollow veridical “properspectives”. They appear to rotate in a direction opposite to the physical rotating direction.

Interactive, Immersive Virtual Reality System Demonstration

Matthias Pusch, Brian Rossini, WorldViz LLC
WorldViz will demonstrate an interactive, immersive virtual reality system that can be viewed through a high-resolution head-mounted display and will be navigated by walking and looking around in a large space, tracking the user with a six degrees of freedom optical/inertial tracking system. Users will experience a variety of virtual environments and phenomena, among them several high-quality architectural models.

Artificial Vision Simulation

George Scarlatis, University of California, Los Angeles
A normal-sighted individual can wear a head-mounted display and have a visual experience similar to that of a blind patient implanted with an epiretinal prosthesis.

Swimmers, Eels and Other Gradient-Gradient Illusions

Arthur Shapiro, Emily Knight, Yehonatan Palmor, Daniel Mancusi, Bucknell University
I will present a number of interactive illusions that have been developed in my lab over the past year. Most of these illusions consist of stationary gradient objects placed in front of a moving gradient background, or moving gradient objects in front of a stationary gradient background. The gradient objects can appear to bob up and down (“swimmers”) or contort in shape (“eels”).

Synchronous and Asynchronous Audiovisual Perception

Yasuto Tanaka, Takeshi Nogai, Shinji Munetsuna, Natunal Institute of Information and Communications Technology
When brief auditory signals precede visual signals, both briefly presented, auditory signals are perceived to come ahead in time. However, when the visual signals precedes the auditory signals, they are perceived to occur simultaneously within a certain time window.

ViperLib – Visual Perception Library

Peter Thompson, University of York
Viperlib is a web-based resource library of images and presentation material illuminating the study of visual perception. All images are given freely by the vision research community and are available for educational, non-profit use only.