Bowser, at a guess you are a first year grad student, very likely you have some links with UC Berkely and you do some TA to help you pay the bills. You have been told about the dean (Levi) been in the Guinness book of records for having (in his youth) the best vernier acuity recorded. Everybody in Berkley is told that the day they arrive.
You are right, about Vernier acuity being just a very specific (almost irrelevant) case, in which brain processing helps. For normal tasks like reading, watching videos, or playing on a computer screen, vernier acuity is irrelevant. What maters is normal visual acuity.
As a vision grad student (and teacher!) you should also understand the concept of visual angle. The minimum resolution the normal human eye can see is about 1.5 minutes of arc. This with a typical eye of 21mm length, matches about the foveal photoreceptor size of 1 to 1.5microns. At a distance of 20-30cm (normal near point of well corrected subject) 1.5 minute of arc corresponds closely to about 300dpi. That is what the "retina" display means. Nothing else. And that is why the 300dpi standard is in place.
Also, you should as a vision sciences teacher know that detailed vision only happens at the fovea, which is only about 300 microns. In the rod free area (very centre of the fovea, and what is used for reading and recognising faces) there are no more than 20,000 cones. In total the fovea has some 200,000 cones. So at 300dpi at 2in X2 in square has 360,000 dots. More than your fovea can cope with.
Originally Posted by Bowser
I teach vision science in a major California, university, the claims about this display are patently false.
First, I'll overlook the claim about what the human retina can display, that's just wrong. The retina doesn't display anything, it's not a projector. Rather, it is an information gather device that has light projected on to it. It's nothing like a display at all. And, even if SJ meant display as in a projection screen, which is only partially correct, it doesn't change facts about the acuity of human visual perception.
The human retina is actually capable of picking up details finer than the width of a human photoreceptor itself. This is sometimes measured with what's called vernier acuity, the ability to detect if two lines are offset from one another.
Further, there are literally BILLIONS of receptors in the retina, with MILLIONS in a linear inch. There is no way a display of 326 ppi is higher resolution than the millions of receptors in a linear inch in the retina.
I'm very saddened to see this misrepresentation of the capabilities of the display in the new iPhone. It will only give the trolls food.