Behind the workstation screen is an extraordinary array of technology to which, quite correctly, we devote considerable attention. But we devote far less to the extraordinary technology in front of the screen—the human brain. Our business performance relies fundamentally on human interpretation of increasingly complex images, yet image interpretation by the human visual processing system is an incredibly complex—and imperfect—task. Seismic interpretation relies on the human view of sophisticated and complex images; we need to improve our human interpretation as much as we seek to improve the images themselves. Knowledge of the way the human visual system works can enhance the way we use our best technology (see also Donnelly, Welland, Cave and Menneer, in press). The results of recent experiments by the authors, designed to address some of the specific issues of seismic data display and interpretation, provide the basis for effectively applying this knowledge.

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