Uncomfortable images produce non-sparse responses in a model of primary visual cortex

Hibbard, Paul B. and O'Hare, Louise (2015) Uncomfortable images produce non-sparse responses in a model of primary visual cortex. Royal Society Open Science . ISSN 2054-5703

Full content URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rsos.140535

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Abstract

The processing of visual information by the nervous
system requires significant metabolic resources. To
minimise the energy needed, our visual system
appears to be optimised to encode typical natural
images as efficiently as possible. One consequence
of this is that some atypical images will produce
inefficient, non-optimal responses.Here, we show that
images that are reported to be uncomfortable to view,
and that can trigger migraine attacks and epileptic
seizures, produce relatively non-sparse responses in a
model of the primary visual cortex. In comparison to
the responses to typical inputs, responses to aversive
images were larger and less sparse. We propose that
this difference in the neural population response may
be one cause of visual discomfort in the general
population, and can produce more extreme responses
in clinical populations such as migraine and epilepsy
sufferers.

Keywords:visual discomfort, natural images, sparse coding, kurtosis, JCOpen
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C830 Experimental Psychology
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Psychology
ID Code:16426
Deposited On:21 Sep 2015 09:47

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