May6th2008 - What you see is what you get? Visual System We...

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1 Visual System What you see is what you get? ± We usually think our senses give us a true picture of the world as it really is ± The reality is that while our senses provide a useful picture of the world, they are imperfect ± Eye function is a compromise of a variety of tradeoffs ² Sensitivity vs. acuity ² Field of view vs. depth perception Outline ± Eye ² Overview of structure ² Pupil and lens ² Retinal components ² Positioning of eyes ± Visual information ² Neural pathways ² Processing of visual information
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2 Figure 10.7 Structures of the Human Eye Eye function ± Pupil: controls the amount of light that enters the eye ± Lens: focuses incoming light on the retina Irreducibly complex? ± Some have argued that the human eye is irreducibly complex, removal of one component renders the eye useless ± Careful analyses of mollusk eyes show that intermediate forms of the vertebrate eye are quite functional Acuity vs. Sensitivity: Part I ± Sensitivity: ability to detect the presence or absence of objects ± Acuity: ability to see the details of objects ± Low light, pupil dilated: higher sensitivity, lower acuity ± Bright light, pupil contracted: higher acuity
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3 Retina Problems in the eye ± Incoming light us distorted by retinal tissue (because light passes through the other layers of retina before hitting photoreceptors, it is distorted ± Blind spot “Patches” to the problems ± Fovea: the thinnest part of the retina and is used for high acuity vision
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May6th2008 - What you see is what you get? Visual System We...

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