1999 volume 28(5) pages 575 – 600
doi:10.1068/p2897

Cite as:
Blanz V, Tarr M J, Bülthoff H H, 1999, "What object attributes determine canonical views?" Perception 28(5) 575 – 600

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What object attributes determine canonical views?

Volker Blanz, Michael J Tarr, Heinrich H Bülthoff

Received 30 December 1996, in revised form 8 January 1999

Abstract. We investigated preferred or canonical views for familiar and three-dimensional nonsense objects using computer-graphics psychophysics. We assessed the canonical views for objects by allowing participants to actively rotate realistically shaded three-dimensional models in real-time. Objects were viewed on a Silicon Graphics workstation and manipulated in virtual space with a three-degree-of-freedom input device. In the first experiment, participants adjusted each object to the viewpoint from which they would take a photograph if they planned to use the object to illustrate a brochure. In the second experiment, participants mentally imaged each object on the basis of the name and then adjusted the object to the viewpoint from which they imagined it. In both experiments, there was a large degree of consistency across participants in terms of the preferred view for a given object. Our results provide new insights on the geometrical, experiential, and functional attributes that determine canonical views under ecological conditions.

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