Spatial arrangement in texture discrimination and texture segregation.
Vancleef K., Putzeys T., Gheorghiu E., Sassi M., Machilsen B., Wagemans J.
We investigated the role of spatial arrangement of texture elements in three psychophysical experiments on texture discrimination and texture segregation. In our stimuli, oriented Gabor elements formed an iso-oriented and a randomly oriented texture region. We manipulated (1) the orientation similarity in the iso-oriented region by adding orientation jitter to the orientation of each Gabor; (2) the spatial arrangement of the Gabors: quasi-random or regular; and (3) the shape of the edge between the two texture regions: straight or curved. In Experiment 1, participants discriminated an iso-oriented stimulus from a stimulus with only randomly oriented elements. Experiment 2 required texture segregation to judge the shape of the texture edge. Experiment 3 replicated Experiment 2 with Gabors of a smaller spatial extent in a denser arrangement. We found comparable performance levels with regular and quasi-random Gabor positions in the discrimination task but not in the segregation tasks. We conclude that spatial arrangement plays a role in a texture segregation task requiring shape discrimination of the texture edge but not in a texture discrimination task in which it is sufficient to discriminate an iso-oriented region from a completely random region.