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By Shimon Ullman

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They are indepen­ dent only in that each can occur without the other. Of course, granting bushes, eye defects, and the like. A theory of direct perception cannot explain such abilities except by vacuous invocation of unspecifiable invariants, and invariant detectors with a magical ability to cope with · novel and difficult circumstances. If the visual system jumps to conclusions on the basis of both partial processes does not rule out their sharing many unconscious "low­ informa1ion and (for the sake of speed) partial analysis at higher levels, this may normally work if the space of possible shapes is sparsely instantiated in the actual world: For example, not an shapes interme­ level" subprocesses of feature extraction, description, and interpreta­ diate between a sheep and a horse, or a horse and a giraffe, are tion.

Clearly, the controversy continues to be a stimulus for further research concerning adequate valid theoretical frameworks. THE BEHAVIORAL AND BAAIN SCIENCES ( 1960), 3 405 Commentary/Ullman: Against direct perception On the S\Jfface. it might seem that modern bra10 research is on the side of a perceptual theory like unman's, whichseeks to elaborate its intervening variablesas computational processes in order to achieve increased explanatory power. ) But the language ol neural mecha· nisms- of neuroanatomy and neurophys,Qiogy - ties outside the scope of perceptual theory.

Comput•tlon vsr•u• construction or r•preeentaUon. I have referred to constructive processes rather than computation. This is not a matter of word preference among synonyms. I am a cognitiVe psychOlogist, not a cognitive science advocate. Computation has deftnite meaning only n i mathematics (or logic), and is as yet only a vague and misleading metaphor In cognition. For instance, the Gibson­ ian "mapping" Is legitimately a computation In a formal systems sense, but Ullman wants to deny that this kind of computation is a computa­ tion.

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