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New forms of stereoscopic 3-D technology offer vision scientists new opportunities for research, but also come with distinct problems. Here we consider autostereo displays where the two eyes' images are spatially interleaved in alternating columns of pixels and no glasses or special optics are required. Column-interleaved displays produce an excellent stereoscopic effect, but subtle changes in the angle of view can increase cross talk or even interchange the left and right eyes' images. This creates several challenges to the presentation of cyclopean stereograms (containing structure which is only detectable by binocular vision). We discuss the potential artifacts, including one that is unique to column-interleaved displays, whereby scene elements such as dots in a random-dot stereogram appear wider or narrower depending on the sign of their disparity. We derive an algorithm for creating stimuli which are free from this artifact. We show that this and other artifacts can be avoided by (a) using a task which is robust to disparity-sign inversion-for example, a disparity-detection rather than discrimination task-(b) using our proposed algorithm to ensure that parallax is applied symmetrically on the column-interleaved display, and (c) using a dynamic stimulus to avoid monocular artifacts from motion parallax. In order to test our recommendations, we performed two experiments using a stereoacuity task implemented with a parallax-barrier tablet. Our results confirm that these recommendations eliminate the artifacts. We believe that these recommendations will be useful to vision scientists interested in running stereo psychophysics experiments using parallax-barrier and other column-interleaved digital displays.

Original publication




Journal article


J Vis




Artifacts, Depth Perception, Humans, Psychophysics, Vision Disparity, Vision Tests, Vision, Binocular, Visual Acuity