Dataset Information


Short-term memory affects color perception in context.

ABSTRACT: Color-based object selection - for instance, looking for ripe tomatoes in the market - places demands on both perceptual and memory processes: it is necessary to form a stable perceptual estimate of surface color from a variable visual signal, as well as to retain multiple perceptual estimates in memory while comparing objects. Nevertheless, perceptual and memory processes in the color domain are generally studied in separate research programs with the assumption that they are independent. Here, we demonstrate a strong failure of independence between color perception and memory: the effect of context on color appearance is substantially weakened by a short retention interval between a reference and test stimulus. This somewhat counterintuitive result is consistent with Bayesian estimation: as the precision of the representation of the reference surface and its context decays in memory, prior information gains more weight, causing the retained percepts to be drawn toward prior information about surface and context color. This interaction implies that to fully understand information processing in real-world color tasks, perception and memory need to be considered jointly.

SUBMITTER: Olkkonen M 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC3903542 | BioStudies | 2014-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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