2023 Symposia

Critical Perspectives On Vision Science: Towards Unbiasing Our Methods and Role in Knowledge Production

Friday, May 19, 2023, 12:00 – 2:00 pm, Talk Room 1

Organizers: Eline Kupers1, Kathryn Graves2, Kimele Persaud3; 1Stanford University, 2Yale University, 3Rutgers University

Discussions around Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) have become commonplace in academia and have resulted in new institutional policies to promote the success of underrepresented populations. But how do we, as a vision science community with various subfields, theoretical constructs, and methodologies, address DEI issues in our research? The goal of this symposium is to provide a critical lens to the history of vision science as a knowledge production process, identify biases and discrepancies in our current methods, and highlight specific solutions to make vision science, as well as our community, more inclusive and impactful. More…

How does the brain combine generative models and direct discriminative computations for visual inference?

Friday, May 19, 2023, 12:00 – 2:00 pm, Talk Room 2

Organizers: Benjamin Peters1, Nikolaus Kriegeskorte1; 1Columbia University

A prevalent view in vision science is that of vision as an inference process, where sensory evidence is evaluated in the context of a generative model that captures prior knowledge about the world. In this conception, visual inference is thought to involve top-down predictions of sensory data serving to evaluate the likelihood of alternative hypotheses. An alternative conception describes vision as a sequence of largely feedforward discriminative computations that filter and transform the visual information so as to represent behaviorally relevant information. This symposium will seek a unified understanding of how primate vision might combine generative models and discriminative computations. More…

The Active Fovea

Friday, May 19, 2023, 2:30 – 4:30 pm, Talk Room 1

Organizers: Martina Poletti1, Martin Rolfs2, Jude Mitchell1; 1University of Rochester, 2Humboldt-Universität

This symposium will take the audience on a journey from the earliest steps of foveal processing at the retinal level to cortical processing in V1 and beyond. It will show how vision and oculomotor behavior are constantly intertwined at each level of processing to the point that behavior becomes an integral part of vision even at its finest scale. We will showcase the most recent advances in the field achieved with a blend of cutting-edge technologies and experimental techniques to propose a new, active view of foveal vision encompassing its interaction with fixational eye movements, saccades and peripheral vision. More…

The development of categorical object representations: bridging visual neuroscience and deep learning

Friday, May 19, 2023, 2:30 – 4:30 pm, Talk Room 2

Organizers: Marieke Mur1; 1Western University

The primate visual cortex develops rapidly over the first years of life. During this early learning period, object representations in high-level visual cortex begin to emphasize categories of ecological relevance such as faces and animals. How these categorical object representations emerge over the course of development is not well understood. Is development solely driven by visual experience? What constraints may additionally shape the development of categorical object representations? This symposium seeks to answer these key questions by integrating the latest work on visual object learning in the fields of developmental and computational neuroscience. More…

Object representations in the parietal cortex

Friday, May 19, 2023, 5:00 – 7:00 pm, Talk Room 1

Organizers: Erez Freud1, Maryam Vaziri Pashkam2, Yaoda Xu3; 1York University, 2National Institute of Mental Health, 3Yale University

Understanding visual object representation is essential to understanding primate vision. Recent evidence shows that the dorsal visual pathway contains robust object representations. How shall we make sense of such representations? By bringing together six speakers studying object representations from different perspectives and using diverse approaches, this symposium aims to characterize the nature of dorsal object representations and elucidate their functional significance and developmental trajectories. Each speaker will also share their thoughts on what they think are the critical unanswered questions and whether it is possible to form a unified view of the role of the parietal cortex in object processing. More…

Continuous psychophysics

Friday, May 19, 2023, 5:00 – 7:00 pm, Talk Room 2

Organizers: Johannes Burge1, Kathryn Bonnen2; 1University of Pennsylvania, 2Indiana University

Continuous psychophysics is a recent and potentially paradigm-shifting methodological advance in the science of perception and action. While traditional psychophysics (e.g. forced-choice, two-alternative tasks) usually acquires measurements on the time-scale of seconds, the computations driving perception and action often take place on the time-scale of milliseconds. Continuous psychophysics closes this temporal gap, providing information about temporal dynamics with millisecond-scale precision. This symposium will showcase prominent examples of the topics that can be investigated with this approach: depth and motion perception, temporal integration, perception & action, numerosity, visual development, and confidence/metacognition. More…