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17 January 2005 The history of spectral sensitivity functions for humans and imagers: 1861 to 2004
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Proceedings Volume 5667, Color Imaging X: Processing, Hardcopy, and Applications; (2005)
Event: Electronic Imaging 2005, 2005, San Jose, California, United States
The spectral response of color systems isolates long-wave information about the world into its long-wave channel; as well the system isolates middle- and short-wave information into their channels. Crosstalk is the dilution of primary channel information with unwanted information from other channels (long-wave channel response to middle- and short-wave information, etc.). Even though Maxwell invented both 3-color photography and the color matching functions of human vision, these fields have standardized on entirely different classes of sensitivity functions. Image Makers use narrow band, minimaly overlapping, sensitivities to minimze crosstalk between the color information found in different spectral regions. Human vision, limited by the photochemistry of visual pigments, uses sensitivities with considerable spectral overlap at the early receptor level and employs post-receptor processing to achieve remarkable properties not usually found in image reproduction. The specific properties of spectral crosstalk provide an important signature of how humans achieve color constancy.
© (2005) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
John J. McCann "The history of spectral sensitivity functions for humans and imagers: 1861 to 2004", Proc. SPIE 5667, Color Imaging X: Processing, Hardcopy, and Applications, (17 January 2005);


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