Date of Original Version
Encyclopedia of Neuroscience, Ed. M.D. Binder, N. Hirokawa and U. Windhorst, Springer-Verlag. 2009
Abstract or Description
Vision is the analysis of patterns in visual images with the view to understanding the objects and the physical processes in the world that generate them. Locally, visual patterns are highly ambiguous and subject to multiple interpretations. Image structures surrounding the pattern being analyzed can provide additional constraints or context to disambiguate the interpretation. The resulting contextual influences are ubiquitous in visual perception and manifest at the neuronal level as the modulation of the activity of neurons by image structures outside their classical receptive fields.