Automatic classification of the density of breast parenchyma is shown using a measure that is correlated to the human observer performance, and compared against the BI-RADS density rating. Increasingly popular in the United States, the Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System (BI-RADS) is used to draw attention to the increased screening difficulty associated with greater breast density; however, the BI-RADS rating scheme is subjective and is not intended as an objective measure of breast density. So, while popular, BI-RADS does not define density classes using a standardized measure, which leads to increased variability among observers. The adaptive thresholding technique is a more quantitative approach for assessing the percentage breast density, but considerable reader interaction is required. We calculate an objective density rating that is derived using a measure of local feature salience. Previously, this measure was shown to correlate well with radiologists' localization and discrimination of true positive and true negative regions-of-interest. Using conspicuous spatial frequency features, an objective density rating is obtained and correlated with adaptive thresholding, and the subjectively ascertained BI-RADS density ratings. Using 100 cases, obtained from the University of South Florida's DDSM database, we show that an automated breast density measure can be derived that is correlated with the interactive thresholding method for continuous percentage breast density, but not with the BI-RADS density rating categories for the selected cases. Comparison between interactive thresholding and the new salience percentage density resulted in a Pearson correlation of 76.7%. Using a four-category scale equivalent to the BI-RADS density categories, a Spearman correlation coefficient of 79.8% was found.