Psychophysics of Appearance Laboratory

What are the mechanisms that process the information surrounding us in the physical world? How do we segment, select, discard and compress information? How do interactions between prior experience, knowledge, biases and current input shape the perception of our environment and determine the scope of what we experience?


In the Psychophysics of Appearance Lab, we investigate these and related questions by conducting experiments that probe how we experience the world. To quantify appearance, we develop appearance-based methods that allow us to measure perception beyond typical categorizations. Using these methods, we recently discovered how the brain compresses information by a mechanism we termed ‘redundancy masking’. Our current main research topics include (1) redundancy masking, (2) contextual modulation, in particular, attentional mechanisms in crowding and reading, (3) numerosity perception, (4) emotion recognition and ensemble coding, (5) appearance of stimuli at threshold, (6) intersections of art and vision science.