Ensemble Perception: A Review of the Field

Aleksei U. Iakovlev

National Research University Higher School of Economics, Moscow, Russia

Natalia A. Tiurina

National Research University Higher School of Economics, Moscow, Russia

Igor S. Utochkin

National Research University Higher School of Economics, Moscow, Russia

Abstract

Ensemble perception refers to the ability of an observer to precisely estimate summary statistics of multiple objects (average, range, numerosity, etc.) at a glance. This article reviews the properties and research methodology of ensemble perception. Further, we consider the theoretical debate around mechanisms of information sampling and summary statistics calculation. One theory suggests a coarse, parallel and exhaustive mechanism, whereas another theory assumes high-precision processing of a small subsample of items to accomplish proxy statistics for the entire ensemble. We describe the evolving view of the internal ensemble representation that initially was viewed as a single magnitude (e.g., average) but later thought of as the entire feature distribution of all items. We also discuss the role of ensemble representations in various perceptual tasks. Finally, we describe potential neural correlates and neurally plausible models of ensemble perception.

Keywords: ensemble perception, summary statistics, distributed attention, visual cortex, population coding

Article language: Russian

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.47010/20.3.1


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АРА Style:

Iakovlev, A.U., Tiurina, N.A., & Utochkin, I.S. (2020). Ensemble Perception: A Review of the Field. The Russian Journal of Cognitive Science, 7(3), 4–24.

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Article 'Ensemble Perception: A Review of the Field' by Aleksei U. Iakovlev, Natalia A. Tiurina, Igor S. Utochkin is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

 
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ISSN 2313-4518
Russian mass media certificate: ЭЛ № ФС 77 – 57220