This being my first blog post I feel I should explain my position in the lab and what it is I am doing. I came over to the Institute of Neuroscience on the back of a Masters degree in Games Engineering. The project I started for my Masters Dissertation in conjunction with the Institute is the project I am now working on as a Research Assistant. The project is to create an Android based stereoscopic vision test in order to judge the stereoacuity of children with visual problems that may affect depth perception. The aim at the moment is to create an environment that has all of the graphical touches removed that would normally identify the app as for children. The reason for this is that the core of the test takes priority over graphical alterations as they aren’t needed for a fully working test environment.
At the moment the main problem I’m facing is the accuracy of the test, the smallest disparity attained on the 3D phone is still too large. This means that I will be required to render the testing environment at a sub-pixel level and will need anti-aliasing to help display this. It is a fairly large task but with some possible advice from my Masters supervisor I should be able to complete the task. I am also working on a small program to help picture the sub-pixels of the LCD to better understand the hardware. This has been achieved with the help of the staff at Bio-Imaging. I took an initial image of the red, green and blue pixels but I also now need to see if I can get an image of the 3D mode enabled with a black image in one eye and a white image in the other eye. This would allow me to see what the Parallax Barrier does to the pixels while 3D mode is enabled.
These are the tasks that will keep me busy for the next few weeks until anti-aliasing is completed.
My workload has started to increase and while I feel the pressure I like to believe I am positively thriving off it! I have never enjoyed university as much as I am now. Over the last 2 weeks I have attended many lectures, mostly on visual systems, which I have found helpful and interesting. The way we as a species have developed trichromacy and the complex way we reach the visual cortex and what happens IN the visual cortex is all very fascinating. I have also attended a lecture on mitochondrial diseases, and a couple of optional lectures Jenny herself ran on physiology (fortunately it was the eye, again, so more area covered). I have begun work on a behviour experiment with mice involving object recognition, which I am finding quite exhilarating and working quite hard on. And Jenny and myself have had a good chat about the research question I will be looking at in semester 2 and 3. Rather than looking at compensation mechanisms with 3D viewing alone we are going to look at the compensation mechanism involved when motion is also induced on the object and see if this affects the level of compensation (we hope it will!). personally over the fortnight I have got the keys to my house and started all the repairs needed on it, beginning with the physical jobs of tearing out carpet and ripping down walls, all very macho! Still very much enjoying the MRes and long may that continue!
The time flies when you’re having fun! (and lots of work!)
Keeping comfortably on top of my work and finding every lecture informative and interesting in it’s own way. A lot of the stuff I am learning now is completely new to me, so while I am still playing catch up I find it all very illuminating, particularly the last two weeks talks on the retina, which tied very nicely into seminars on bionic eyes and eye tracking technology. I have been a little remiss on my statistics (it’s just a bit mundane at the moment) but I am going to set that right this week. I have finished and handed in my first assignment (unassessed with behaviour) and have my fingers crossed the first report I have written for next to 6 years is going to be well received. Starting to wonder about what to do a presentation on in sensory systems and I might try to work it around either the retina or possibly even binocular viewing and the paper “why pictures look good” if I can wrangle it!
Personally the weekend had it’s ups and downs, went shopping in Ikea for furniture! and hopefully we’ll be getting the house on wed. I got a new tattoo on the saturday because my rugby game was off, which stung quite a bit I might say!