The problem investigated is that of a human observer having to distinguish between certain specified geometrical forms corrupted by speckle—an idealization of the problem of a scientist studying a synthetic aperture radar map. Specifically, the cases of two simple alternative forms and of two and four orientations of a simple form have been considered. A theoretical model is developed for the observer’s decision process by analogy with optimal receiver theory, and the probability of a correct decision is related to form parameters like size, contrast, and looks. These calculations are verified by psychophysical experiments using computer-simulated pictures.
© 1981 Optical Society of America
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