Philosophy Colloquium
Ryan Ogilvie
University of Maryland
Vision for Action and Perception: Are These Two Functions of Vision So Distinct?

David Milner and Melvyn Goodale's (1995, 2006, 2008) influential dual visual systems hypothesis (DVSH) proposes a functional description of the two main cortical visual pathways in the primate brain. The dorsal stream processes fast, accurate, and egocentrically-specified visual information for the fine-grained implementation of skilled, online motor control. The ventral stream is thought to process slow, “inaccurateâ€ù, and allocentrically-specified visual information that supports the recognition and identification of objects and events, and other forms of visual processing associated with conscious visual experience. This functional gloss presupposes that vision for action employs quite different visual information from “vision for perceptionâ€ù. I argue that the type of information employed by motor systems will generally be task sensitive and can, contra Milner and Goodale, recruit “scene-basedâ€ù spatial information. Furthermore, vision for perception is not coded in allocentric and it is, at best, misleading to conceive of the spatial information underlying this type of vision as “inaccurateâ€ù.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Skinner 1115