Mach bands, Hermann grid, and lateral inhibition in the retina
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Literature about two illusions that are traditionally linked to lateral inhibitory processes in the retina is surveyed. Despite much research and a long history, the Mach bands illusion has not yet been very well-understood. Quantitative data is lacking, while qualitative data is controversial. The Hennann Grid illusion, equally old, has not yet been fully explored either. A critical and a comparative review of the experiments and the conclusions is carried out, noting common results as well as contradictory ones. New experiments and a different method of measurement are then proposed. Some preliminary experiments and their results are included in the appendix together with a review of recent knowledge about the primate retina and its functioning.
- Masters Theses