feature detection theory

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Any of a number of theories according to which the perception of objects proceeds by recognizing individual features (1), such as a pair of wheels, a pair of pedals, a handlebar, a saddle, and an M-shaped metal frame, and assembling them to form a coherent pattern, in this example a bicycle, which is then identified as such. Also called feature abstraction theory. Compare feature integration theory, top-down processing.

Subjects: Psychology.

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