The constraints on processing of internal and external stimuli that are dependent upon the structure of, and the processes related to, the cognitive system.
Fundamental research in attention emerged in the 1950s with information processing theories. D.E. Broadbent published an influential book in 1958, Perception and Communication, which was in turn influenced by the contemporary work of communication theorists in engineering. Broadbent used the communication system as a metaphor for relationships within the human brain. Each brain system (i.e., sensory, memory, response generation) was conceptualized in terms of a communication system, with an information source, transmission channel(s), and a receiver. The channel by which a message is transmitted has a capacity, which limits the rate by which information can be transmitted. A property of communication systems is that the transmission of information within a system can never exceed the capacity of...