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IEEE Trans Vis Comput Graph. 2012 Jul;18(7):1170-88. doi: 10.1109/TVCG.2011.127.

Attention and visual memory in visualization and computer graphics.

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Department of Computer Science, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695-8206, USA.


A fundamental goal of visualization is to produce images of data that support visual analysis, exploration, and discovery of novel insights. An important consideration during visualization design is the role of human visual perception. How we "see" details in an image can directly impact a viewer's efficiency and effectiveness. This paper surveys research on attention and visual perception, with a specific focus on results that have direct relevance to visualization and visual analytics. We discuss theories of low-level visual perception, then show how these findings form a foundation for more recent work on visual memory and visual attention. We conclude with a brief overview of how knowledge of visual attention and visual memory is being applied in visualization and graphics. We also discuss how challenges in visualization are motivating research in psychophysics.

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