Emergence of Attention Focus in a Biologically-Based Bidirectionally-Connected Hierarchical Network
We present a computational model for visual processing where attentional focus emerges fundamental mechanisms inherent to human vision. Through detailed analysis of activation development in the network we demonstrate how normal interaction between top-down and bottom-up processing and intrinsic mutual competition within processing units can give rise to attentional focus. The model includes both spatial and object-based attention, which are computed simultaneously, and can mutually reinforce each other. We show how a non-salient location and a corresponding non-salient feature set that are at first weakly activated by visual input can be reinforced by top-down feedback signals (centrally controlled attention), and instigate a change in attentional focus to the weak object. One application of this model is highlight a task-relevant object in a cluttered visual environment, even when this object is non-salient (non-conspicuous).
KeywordsSpatial attention Object-based attention Biased competition Recurrent bidirectionally connected networks
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