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An ideal observer model for identifying the reference frame of objects
Joseph L Austerweil · Abram Friesen · Tom Griffiths

Wed Dec 14 08:45 AM -- 02:59 PM (PST) @
The object people perceive in an image can depend on its orientation relative to the scene it is in (its reference frame). For example, the images of the symbols $\times$ and $+$ differ by a 45 degree rotation. Although real scenes have multiple images and reference frames, psychologists have focused on scenes with only one reference frame. We propose an ideal observer model based on nonparametric Bayesian statistics for inferring the number of reference frames in a scene and their parameters. When an ambiguous image could be assigned to two conflicting reference frames, the model predicts two factors should influence the reference frame inferred for the image: The image should be more likely to share the reference frame of the closer object ({\em proximity}) and it should be more likely to share the reference frame containing the most objects ({\em alignment}). We confirm people use both cues using a novel methodology that allows for easy testing of human reference frame inference.

Author Information

Joseph L Austerweil (University of Wisconsin, Madison)

As a computational cognitive psychologist, my research program explores questions at the intersection of perception and higher-level cognition. I use recent advances in statistics and computer science to formulate ideal learner models to see how they solve these problems and then test the model predictions using traditional behavioral experimentation. Ideal learner models help us understand the knowledge people use to solve problems because such knowledge must be made explicit for the ideal learner model to successfully produce human behavior. This method yields novel machine learning methods and leads to the discovery of new psychological principles.

Abram Friesen (DeepMind)
Tom Griffiths (Princeton)

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