Before there was a formal discipline of psychology, there were attempts to understand the relationship between visual perception and retinal physiology. Today, there is still uncertainty about the extent to which even very basic behavioral data (called here candidates for lower-level processing) can be predicted based upon retinal processing. Here, a general framework is proposed for developing models of lower-level processing. It is argued that our knowledge of ganglion cell function and retinal mechanisms has advanced to the point where a model of lower-level processing should include a testable model of ganglion cell function. This model of ganglion cell function, combined with minimal assumptions about the role of the visual cortex, forms a model of lower-level processing. Basic behavioral and physiological descriptions of light adaptation are reviewed, and recent attempts to model lower-level processing are discussed.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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