Autonomous operation of tracking systems implies the need for abilities which are predicated on discriminating a target from nontarget objects and noise. Intelligent discrimination is most often hampered by a lack of explicit information, hence requiring elaborate processing to extract implicit informa-tion for an electronic "brain." The fact that it is now possible to construct sensors which provide not only brightness information on a two-dimensional map, but also motion and range on equivalent maps, bypasses the aforementioned processing to directly provide sufficient explicit information for the discrimination of targets. The only processing then required is to combine the information in a composite map such that targets stand out clearly from non-targets. This is particularly true of airborne targets where range and motion are generally quite distinct relative to their background. This general philosophy pertains as well to ground targets, in that sensing directly those characteristics which distinguish them from other objects greatly facilitates the tasks of locating and identifying such targets. For ground targets, sensors designed to sense characteristics such as straight lines, smooth surfaces, color, symmetry, and motion would, by use of appropriate composite mapping, detect and acquire predefined classes of targets with high levels of discrimination.