Thermodynamics of natural images Journal Article

Author(s): Stephens, Greg J; Mora, Thierry; Tkačik, Gašper; Bialek, William S
Article Title: Thermodynamics of natural images
Abstract: The scale invariance of natural images suggests an analogy to the statistical mechanics of physical systems at a critical point. Here we examine the distribution of pixels in small image patches and show how to construct the corresponding thermodynamics. We find evidence for criticality in a diverging specific heat, which corresponds to large fluctuations in how "surprising" we find individual images, and in the quantitative form of the entropy vs. energy. The energy landscape derived from our thermodynamic framework identifies special image configurations that have intrinsic error correcting properties, and neurons which could detect these features have a strong resemblance to the cells found in primary visual cortex.
Journal Title: Physical Review Letters
Volume: 110
ISSN: 1079-7114
Publisher: American Physical Society  
Date Published: 2013-01-01
Start Page: 018701
Open access: yes (repository)