Influence of preliminary filtration of images on thresholds of distinction of the length of segments in the Müller-Lyer illusion



This work is dedicated to the study of the digital filtering of the lines in the Müller-Layer illusion with the purpose of allocation of high- and low-frequency components. Digital filtration performed by convolving the image with a DoG-function (differential of Gaussian) – wavelets, representing the difference between of the two different gaussoid with twice the half-width. For allocation from images of a high-frequency component we used DoG-function in the size of 0,27 angular degrees, low-frequency – 2,13 angular degrees; the severity of the illusion was measured by a modified method of Gregory. It was found that the Müller-Lyer illusion remains unchanged both at high-frequency and at low-frequency filtering of test images. However, when presenting the figure of low spatial frequencies, the value of error caused by the illusion erases by 10% compared to the value of error arising in response to the presentation of images with high spatial-frequencies. Neurophysiologic mechanism for fixed differences probably consists in the peculiarities of spatial-frequency settings receptive fields of neurons in the visual cortex – which is enhanced in the high spatial range. It is suggested that the simulation of Müller-Lyer illusion must take into account both a spatial-frequency spectrum of the test image, and the characteristics of band pass filtering in the spatial-frequency channels of the primary divisions of the visual system while the role of higher levels of the visual system is engaged in building an envelope on the basis of the preliminary work of receptive fields of the primary visual cortex.

General Information

Keywords: vision, perception, illusion Müller-Lyer, the length of the segments, spatial-frequency filtering, wavelets

Journal rubric: Psychophysiology

Article type: scientific article

For citation: Shoshina I.I., Pronin S.V., Shelepin Y.E. Influence of preliminary filtration of images on thresholds of distinction of the length of segments in the Müller-Lyer illusion . Eksperimental'naâ psihologiâ = Experimental Psychology (Russia), 2010. Vol. 3, no. 4, pp. 16–24. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)


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Information About the Authors

Irina I. Shoshina, Doctor of Biology, Associate Professor, Senior Researcher of the Laboratory of the Vision Physiology, Pavlov Institute of Physiology of the Russian Academy of Science, St.Petersburg, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:

Sergey V. Pronin, Associate of the Laboratory of Physiology of Vision, I.P. Pavlov Institute of Physiology, RAS, Russia, e-mail:

Yuriy E. Shelepin, Doctor of Medicine, Professor, Head of the Laboratory of Physiology of Vision, I.P. Pavlov Institute of Physiology, RAS, St.Petersburg, Russia



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