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Vision Res. 1998 Sep;38(18):2721-34.

Perceptual filling-in: a parametric study.

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Laboratory of Brain and Cognition, NIMH, NIH, Bethesda, MD 20892-4415, USA.


We studied perceptual filling-in during maintained peripheral viewing of a uniform gray or red figure presented on a large textured background. Changes in the figure's size, shape, and eccentricity caused variations in the time required for filling-in that could be predicted from the size of its cortical projection within early visual areas. The data suggest that the time which elapsed before the figure was filled-in by its background reflects the time required for figure-ground segregation to fail, rather than a slow spread of the background across the figure. Our findings reveal interactions between surface segregation and filling-in which may be at the basis of normal surface perception.

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