Visual processing acts as a prism, splitting visual information from the retinal image into separately processed features such as color, shape, and orientation. Binding refers to the set of cognitive and neural mechanisms that re-integrate these features to create a holistic representation of the objects in the visual field. The binding problem in vision refers to how this integration is achieved. The binding problem, however, isn’t a singular problem, but a constellation of interrelated problems. The articles in this special issue of Visual Cognition cover three major types of binding, each of which may require a unique solution: The binding of features within objects, the relational binding among objects, and the binding between temporally related events. Within these broad topics, articles consider the role of attention in feature binding, the representation of static and moving multi-feature objects, the binding of objects to scenes, binding processes involved in learning and long-term memory, the development of binding abilities, and binding of information between visual and non-visual memory systems. Rather than disseminate conclusive solutions to these various instantiations of the binding problem, this collection of work describes the current state-of-the science, highlights the interconnections between the binding problems and the approaches taken to solve them, and outlines the critical issues that have yet to be resolved. In this single volume readers will confront work with children, young adults, and patients, and work that uses traditional behavioural measures, eye movement recording, functional imaging, and transcranial magnetic stimulation.
Brockmole, Franconeri, Introduction. Hyun, Woodman, Luck, The Role of Attention in the Binding of Surface Features to Locations. Braet, Humphreys, The Role of Re-entrant Processes in Feature Binding: Evidence from Neuropsychology and TMS on Late Onset Illusory Conjunctions. Fougnie, Marois, Attentive Tracking Disrupts Feature Binding in Visual Working Memory. Oakes, Messenger, Ross-Sheehy, Luck, New Evidence for Rapid Development of Color Location Binding in Infants’ Visual Short-term Memory. Allen, Hitch, Baddeley, Cross-modal Binding and Working Memory. van Rullen, Binding Hardwired vs. On-demand Feature Conjunctions. Hommel, Colzato, When an Object is More Than a Binding of its Features: Evidence for Two Mechanisms of Visual Feature Integration. Alvarez, Thompson, Overwriting and Rebinding: Why Feature-switch Detection Tasks Underestimate the Binding Capacity of Visual Working Memory. Logie, Brockmole, Vandenbroucke, Bound Feature Combinations are Fragile in Visual Short-term Memory But Form the Basis for Long-term Learning. Makovski, Jiang, Feature Binding in Attentive Tracking of Distinct Objects. Mitroff, Arita, Fleck, Staying in Bounds: Contextual Constraints on Object File Coherence. Saiki, Functional Roles of Memory for Feature-location Binding in Event Perception: Investigation with Spatiotemporal Visual Search. Holcombe, The color-motion Binding Asynchrony Results from Overweighting Early Portions of the Color Interval. Ryan, Villate, Building Visual Representations: The Binding of Relative Spatial Relations Across Time. Hollingworth, Two Forms of Scene Memory Guide Visual Search: Memory for General Scene Context and Memory for the Binding of Target Object to Scene Location.