Ono H, Lillakas L, Wade N J, 2007, "Seeing double and depth with Wheatstone’s stereograms" Perception 36(11) 1611 – 1623
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Seeing double and depth with Wheatstone’s stereograms
Hiroshi Ono, Linda Lillakas, Nicholas J Wade
Received 23 October 2006, in revised form 15 March 2007
Abstract. Charles Wheatstone, in his classic paper on the invention of the stereoscope, concluded “... objects whose pictures do not fall on corresponding points of the two retinõe may still appear single” (1838 Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London 128 384). Soon after, Ernst Brücke, Alexandre Prévost, David Brewster, Joseph Towne, and Joseph LeConte all published disagreements with this conclusion. LeConte’s objections were most frequent and most prolonged. To understand the basis of the disagreements, we conducted three experiments using Wheatstone’s original stereograms and found that most stereograms produced depth perception with diplopia, which partially explains the consistency among his critics’ conclusions. Most of the criticism at variance with Wheatstone’s conclusion was based on research conducted outside Germany. We argue that LeConte’s lack of knowledge of the German literature on vision research prevented him from considering investigating Wheatstone’s experiment with a stereogram having a smaller disparity.
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