Some comments on visual perception and the use of video playback in animal behavior studies
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Video playback experiments are potentially powerful tools in behavioral research. A video screen mimics natural color, brightness, texture, and motion to humans (for which it was designed) because monitors stimulate human photoreceptors in approximately the same relative proportions as the stimuli that they mimic. Because most animals have vision that is very different from that of humans their cones may be stimulated very differently from ours, and an image that looks excellent to us may be unrecognizable to them, and vice versa. In this article we summarize how the simulation of a monitor works and the ways it can go wrong, using a bird and a fish model retina as examples. Finally we make some recommendations for minimizing some of these problems.
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