Effect of visual noise on pattern recognition
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We recognize objects even when they are partially degraded by visual noise. Using monkeys performing a sequential delayed match-to-sample task, we studied the relation between the amount of visual noise (5, 10, 15, 20 or 25%) degrading the eight black and white stimuli used here, and the accuracy and speed with which matching stimuli were identified. The correct response rate decreased slightly as the amount of visual noise increased for both monkeys. Even at the 25% noise level, the correct response rate was more than 80%, indicating that the monkeys can recognize the pattern they are trying to match when the pattern is masked with visual noise. In contrast, the reaction time to the match stimulus increased substantially as the amount of visual noise increased. Thus, the monkeys appear to be trading time to maintain accuracy, suggesting that the monkeys are accumulating information and/or testing hypotheses about whether the test stimulus is likely to be a match for the sample being held in short-term memory.
KeywordsPattern recognition Visual noise Behavioral latency Rhesus monkey
This work is supported by AIST/Japan and IRP/NIMH/USA.
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