Color Vision (Honors Seminar 21962 HON201) Spring 2014

Description: Color makes our world beautiful. One common mistake people tend to make is that they think color is in the light, or color is a characteristics of light. The purpose of this course is to present evidence that color is the consequence of neural processing in our brain and provide students with an understanding of the functional anatomy and neurophysiology of the visual system, and an understanding of how neural activity results in color perception. Students will be exposed with a variety of methods for investigating color vision including molecular biology, psychophysics, electrophysiology, and brain imaging. Students who are interested in visual neuroscience, ophthalmology, visual arts, and engineering will benefit from the course for knowing the fundamental neural basis of color vision.
Requirement: This class will heavily involve presentation and discussion over different topics. Students are required to read or watch the materials for each topic before each class and submit a question each week for discussion.

Students will choose to do a presentation or write a short essay (5-10 pages, double space) that reviews a topic related to color vision for final grade.
Class Date and Time: Friday 10:00am - 10:50am
Classroom: Burnham Hall BH21
Office Hour: Email for Appointment
Lecturer: Dingcai Cao, PhD
Associate Professor
Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences
Office: 1905 W. Taylor Street, Room L149, Chicago, IL 60612
Tel: 312-355-3662
Course Schedule
Topic 1: Demonstration of Color phenomenon (1 hour) Powerpoint Presentation
Week 1: Jan 17, 2014 (Organization, Course Introduction)
Goal: to demonstrate many phenomena related to color vision, including chromatic contrast, assimilation, color filling-in, color constancy, short-term and long-term chromatic adaptation, color afterimage. This demonstration will provide definite evidences that color is not from light, instead, color is a mental experience.
Topic 2: The history of color science (1 hour) Powerpoint Presentation
Week 2: Jan 24, 2014

Goal: to introduce the history of scientific research of color vision by outlining the contributions from Newton, Thomas Young, Helmholtz, Maxwell, Hering etc.
Reading: Shevell 2003, Chapter 1, The Origins of Modern Color Science by J. D. Mollon

Video Watching: Nathans: Human Color Vision and its Variations. YouTube .
Topic 3: Light and color specification (2 hours) Powerpoint Presentation

Weeks 3-4: Jan. 31, 2014
Feb. 7, 2014
Goal: to introduce how to measure light, and how light measurements can be used to quantify color based on color matching, or cone spectral sensitivities.
Reading: Kaiser & Boynton 1996, Chapter 3, Pages 58-90 PDF ; Kaiser & Boynton 1996: Appendix, Part III, pages 544-562 PDF
Topic 4: Anatomical and physiological basis for color vision (3 hours) Powerpoint Presentation 1
Weeks 5-7: Feb 14, Feb 21, Feb 28, 2014:
Goal: to introduce the anatomic and physiological characteristics of visual pathways for color vision.
Reading: 1) Web of Vision, Simple Anatomy of the Retina (2) Shevell 2003, Chapter 6, The Physiology of Color Vision by Peter Lennie; Kaplan 2008
Watching: Nathans: Photoreceptors and Image Processing, Parts A and B. YouTube Part A; YouTube Part B
Topic 5: Genetics of color vision (1 hour)
Weeks 8: March 7, 2014
Goal: to discuss the genetic basis of color vision and evolution of primate color vision.
Reading: Neitz & Neitz, 2011
Watching: Nathans: The Evolution of Trichromatic Color Vision
Topic 6: Color vision evaluation (2 hours)
Weeks 9-10: Mar 14, Mar 21, 2014
Goal: to introduce types of inherited color deficiency and color vision evaluation. Students will participate a lab session to assess their own color vision using anomaloscope, FM-100 hue and Ishihara color plates.
Reading: Pokorny 1981; Cao, 2012
Topic 7: Color Vision & Engineering
Weeks 11: April 4, 2014
Goal: to discuss the application of color vision in engineering, with focus on modern color display technologies (LCD, OLED)
Reading: Brainard, D. H., Pelli, D.G., and Robson, T. (2002).
Tyson J. (How LCDs work?)
Freudenrich, C. (How OLEDs work?) .
Topic 8: Color Vision and Arts
Weeks 12: April 11, 2014
Goal: to discuss the link between color vision and visual arts
Reading: Werner, J. S. (1998). Aging through the eyes of Monet .
Topic 9: New developments in color vision research (1 hour)
Week 13: April 18, 2014
Goal: to discuss the latest development in the field, including rod-cone interaction in color vision, adaptive optics, gene therapy of dichromats, tetrachromacy, etc.
Reading: Williams 2011; Mancuso et al 2009; Jameson, K. A., & Kighnote, S. M. (2001) ]
Topic 10: Color Vision: A philosophical perspective (1 hour, led by Prof. David Hilbert)
Week 14: April 25, 2014
Goal: to discuss of color phenomenon from a philosophy perspective
Reading: Byrne, A & Hilbert, D. (2003) [ PDF online]
Week 15: May 2, 2014: Final Week: Paper due at 6:00pm by email
Reading and watching list (videos, books and articles)
Videos (Lectured by Jeremy Nathans, A Member of National Academy of Sciences)
  1. Photoreceptors and Image Processing, Part A
  2. Photoreceptors and Image Processing, Part B
  3. Human Color Vision and its Variations
  4. The Evolution of Trichromatic Color Vision
  1. The Color of Science, Second Edition. Edited by Steven Shevell. Elsevier, Oxford, UK. 2003 [ Chapter 1PDF] [ Chapter 6 PDF]
  2. Human Color Vision, Second Edition, by Peter K. Kaiser and Robert M. Boynton. OSA, 1996. Chapter 3, Pages 58-90 (PDF) ; Appendix, Part III, pages 544-562 PDF
  1. Brainard, D. H., Pelli, D.G., and Robson, T. (2002). Display characterization. In the Encylopedia of Imaging Science and Technology. J. Hornak (ed.), Wiley. 172-188.[ PDF online]
  2. Byrne, A & Hilbert, D. (2003) Color vision, Philosophical issues about, The Encyclopedia of Cognitive Science, Ed. Lynn Nadel. Nature Publishing Group. [ PDF online]
  3. Cao, D. (2013). Color Vision and Night Vision. In S. R. Sadda & D. R. Hinton (Eds.), Retina (S. J. Ryan, Editor-in-Chief) (5th ed., Vol. 1, pp285-299). Philadelphia: Elsvier Mosby.[ PDF online]
  4. Freudenrich, C. How OLEDs work?
  5. Jameson, K. A., & Kighnote, S. M. (2001). Richer color experience in observers with multiple photopigment opsin genes. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 8(2), 244-261. [ PDF online]
  6. Kaplan, E. (2008). The M, P, and K streams of the primate visual system: What do they do for vision?. In Basbaum, A. I., Kaneko, A., Shepherd, G. M. & Westheimer, G. (Eds.), The Senses: A Comprehensive Reference (Vol. 1, pp. 369-382). San Diego: Academic Press. [PDF online]
  7. Mancuso, K., Hauswirth, W. W., Li, Q., Connor, T. B., Kuchenbecker, J. A., Mauck, M. C., et al. (2009). Gene therapy for red-green colour blindness in adult primates. Nature, 461(7265), 784-787. [PDF online]
  8. Neitz, J., & Neitz, M. (2011). The genetics of normal and defective color vision. Vision Research, 51, 633-651. [PDF online]
  9. Pokorny J (Chairman): Report of Working Group 41, "Procedures for testing color vision." Committee on Vision, Assembly of Behavioral and Social Sciences, National Research Council. Washington DC: National Academy Press, 1981. [ Read it online for free]
  10. Tyson, J. How LCDs work?
  11. Werner, J. S. (1998). Aging through the eyes of Monet. In Color Vision-Perspectives from Different Disciplines, Walter de Gruyter & Co., Berlin-New York. PDF online
  12. Williams, D. R. (2011). Imaging single cells in the living retina. Vision Research, 51, 1379-1396. [PDF online]
Further Reading
  1. Lee, B. B. (2011). Visual pathways and psychophysical channels in the primate. The Journal of Physiology, 589, 41-47.[PDF online]
  2. Shevell, S. K., & Kingdom, F. A. (2008). Color in complex scenes. Annual Review of Psychology, 59, 143-166.[PDF online]
  3. Zaidi, Q., Ennis, R., Cao, D., & Lee, B. B. (2012). Neural locus of color afterimages. Current Biology, 22(3), 220-224.[PDF online]