Fwd: AUDITORY Digest - 26 Jun 2004 to 27 Jun 2004 (#2004-148)

Subject: Fwd: AUDITORY Digest - 26 Jun 2004 to 27 Jun 2004 (#2004-148)
From: Kevin Austin (kevin.austin@videotron.ca)
Date: Mon Jun 28 2004 - 06:26:21 EDT


A little 'light' reading on direct perception (and the possibility of




>Date: Mon, 28 Jun 2004 00:00:02 -0400
>From: Automatic digest processor <LISTSERV@LISTS.MCGILL.CA>
>Subject: AUDITORY Digest - 26 Jun 2004 to 27 Jun 2004 (#2004-148)
>Sender: AUDITORY Research in Auditory Perception <AUDITORY@LISTS.MCGILL.CA>
>There are 4 messages in this issue.
>Topics of the day:
> 1. direct/indirect perception
>----- Original Message -----
> > Quoting Brian Gygi <bgygi@EBIRE.ORG>:
>> > Julien,
>> >
>> > I'm not the authority on this, but I always thought that
>"direct perception" is direct in the sense that all the information
>for perception is available in the environment, as opposed to more
>information-processing-oriented theories of perception which posit
>that the stimulus is impoverished and the job of the sensory system
>is improve it through the use of prior knowledge and inferences. So
>direct perception does not really require intermediate
>representations or memory models, although I believe only the most
>hardcore Gibsonians would insist on no role for memory.
> > >
>> > Brian Gygi
>> > East Bay Institute for Research and Education
> > > Martinez, CA
> > >
> > ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
>> Bruno L. Giordano - Ph. D. student
>> Dipartimento di Psicologia Generale
>> Via Venezia 8 - 35131 Padova, Italy
> >
> > currently hosted by:
>> Equipe Perception et Cognition Musicales
>> Ircam-CNRS (UMR 9912)
>> 1 place Igor-Stravinsky
> > F-75004 Paris, France

>From: "Bruno L. Giordano" <bruno.giordano@UNIPD.IT>
>Sent: Friday, June 25, 2004 6:39 AM
>Subject: Re: direct/indirect perception
>> Dear Brian, and list,
>> the ecological approach has the merit of directing attention of
>research to the information in the environment, and to how the
>adaptive animal tends to structure the incoming information in terms
>of properties of the environment. These issues are important to me.
> >
> > However, what would we gain the day we will be able to state
>clearly: [1] perception is direct vs. [2] perception is not direct?
> > Which will be the advantages of such knowledge?
> > Bruno
> >

>Date: Sun, 27 Jun 2004 02:23:40 -0400
>From: Al Bregman <bregman@HEBB.PSYCH.MCGILL.CA>
>Subject: Re: direct/indirect perception
>Dear Bruno, Brian, and list:
>As I understand Gibson's concept of direct perception, it is more
>than just the claim that the necessary information to form the
>percept is in the stimulus. It also claims that there is no mental
>representation at all of the stimulus.
>The argument goes like this: suppose that the way we know the world
>is by forming a representation of it. How would that help? How
>would we know what was in the representation? Would we have to form
>a representation of the representation? This leads to an infinite
>regress. An advocate of representations would argue that the brain,
>having formed the representation, could then read features off it as
>required. Gibson rejects the need for a representation at all.
>He would argue that the world is its own best representation. Why
>would you need another one? The brain can read off features, as it
>needs them, directly from the world, not from a representation.
>Hence the name "direct perception". Furthermore, all the forms of
>interaction that a representation theorist might envision between
>the rest of the brain and the representation, e.g., feedback loops
>for the control of action, can be done directly with the world.
>We are so directly coupled with the world that we can consider the
>world and our actions upon it as a single system for purposes of
>modeling. So we don't need a representation. Of course we know we
>have representations for purposes of thought and imagination, but
>these processes are different from simple perception, which does not
>use representations.
>I don't agree with this, but it's the argument for direct
>Al Bregman
>Date: Sun, 27 Jun 2004 14:57:06 +0530
>From: Seetharamakrishnan <seethark@ETH.NET>
>Subject: Re: direct/indirect perception
>While we perceive sight through eyes, sound through ears etc... we
>perceive the thought itself directly. There is no other instrument
>to perceive thought except the awareness itself. ( i mean the
>awareness of thought)
>But even sight and sound we assume that we are perceiving from
>outside. Whereas in actuality the awareness principle is first and
>all the other sensations/perceptions are secondary only. (ie
>secondary to awareness). Even to say that we perceive nothing we
>need awareness.
>So the strong belief that sensations are from outside is only an
>illusion. There is nothing called outside. Even if we call something
>as outside, it is thought which classifies as inside and outside.
>Thought is very limited and it itself is being perceived. Any story
>which thought constructs can only be limited and cannot be Truth.
>Date: Sun, 27 Jun 2004 20:22:01 +0530
>From: Seetharamakrishnan <seethark@ETH.NET>
>Subject: Re: direct/indirect perception
>If by perception only the mechanics of perception is meant, then it
>can be objectively known. When thought interferes perception, then
>the thing is recognized/named. ie Actually the memory comes into
>play. Otherwise there is only perception and no recognition.
>In any case by leaving out awareness/consciousness principle and
>only analyzing the mechanics of perception does not give the full
>Date: Sun, 27 Jun 2004 20:27:10 -0400
>From: Al Bregman <bregman@HEBB.PSYCH.MCGILL.CA>
>Subject: Re: direct/indirect perception
>Dear Simon and List,
>Simon Makin wrote:
>"> But what would a Gibsonian have to say about phenomena like
>phonemic restoration? "
>As I said, I don't agree with Gibson's approach. There are a number
>of reasons, including the one you gave concerning phoneme
>restoration. My guess is that Gibson would have to say that phoneme
>restoration wasn't really a case of raw perception, but rather
>something else -- perhaps "interpretation". The issue here is
>whether you can draw a boundary around a set of perceptual phenomena
>that might not need representation.
>You wrote: "But what would a Gibsonian have to say about phenomena
>like ... the McGurk effect?"
>Gibson rejected all illusions as valid data about perception,
>sparing himself the necessity of dealing with these problems.
>Without the concept of "representation", it is difficult to have a
>concept of "illusion". Without a representation, what is an illusion
>a mismatch between? The world and some behavior? But you don't have
>to react overtly to experience an illusion.
>Furthermore, Gibson ignored the role of synthesis (or composition)
>in perception. I don't have the space to go into the many issues
>concerning cmposition here. You can read about it in Bregman, A.S.
>(1977) Perception and behavior as compositions of ideals. Cognitive
>Psychology, 9, 250-292.
>Just to give the flavor, consider the presentation of a picture of a
>printed capital Z. Suppose it were drawn so that it would be a good
>capital N if it were rotated by 90 degrees. Now let us present it
>rotated by 45 degrees clockwise. Is it a Z or an N? Your decision
>about this is coupled with your decision about the rotation. If it
>is a Z, then it has been rotated clockwise, but if it's an N it has
>been rotated counter-clockwise. Conversely, if it has been rotated
>counterclockwise it is an N. Therefore the act of perception is a
>composition of two underlying aspects of visual reality(we can call
>them schemas if we agree that schemas are composable).
>Another example is a rotated capital Q. What are its physical
>features? Should it be perceived as "rotated"? Only if it's a Q!
>Some foreign alphabet could have the form that we call a "rotated Q"
>as an unrotated letter. The fact is that many of the apparently raw
>features of visual inputs depend on their interpretation.
>Take the case of an A overlaid on top of a B. Consider the visible
>fragments of the B. They are only interpretable as a single coherent
>form if they are understood as being created by the occusion
>introduced by an overlaid A. This can only be addressed by a
>compositional theory of perception (what used to be called analysis
>by synthesis).
>By the way, here's an another interesting detail of Gibson's theory:
>Gibson argued that in addition to the raw qualities of the perceived
>objects, our brains also extract from the environment some qualities
>called "affordances". These are aspects of the environment that are
>linked directly to action.
>An example is that a small object affords picking it up. For a fly,
>a vertical surface affords walking on it. For a person, the wall
>does not yield this affordance; so affordances are species-specific.
>Gibson does not view these affordances as being the result of
>inference or memory, but as given directly in the environment as
>soon as we perceive it. In other words the links to action are
>direct, not mediated by any other mental process.
>- Al Bregman
>End of AUDITORY Digest - 26 Jun 2004 to 27 Jun 2004 (#2004-148)

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