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Preattentive Visual Properties and How to Use Them in Information Visualization

A preattentive visual property is one which is processed in spatial memory without our conscious action. In essence it takes less than 500 milliseconds for the eye and the brain to process a preattentive property of any image. This is good news for information visualization designers and graphic designers in more general terms too – it means that these properties can be harnessed to make it easier for a user to understand what is presented through the design and save them from consciously processing all the data presented in short-term memory which requires more effort.
John Tukey, the American mathematician and statistician, said; “The greatest value of a picture is when it forces us to no…

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