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We have developed a computational paradigm, spatial aggregation, to unify the description of a class of imagistic problem solvers. A program written in this paradigm has the following properties. It takes a continuous field and optional objective functions as input, and produces high-level descriptions of structure, behavior, or control actions. It computes a multi-layer of intermediate representations, called spatial aggregates, by forming equivalence classes and adjacency relations. It employs a small set of generic operators such as aggregation, classification, and localization to perform bidirectional mapping between the information-rich field and successively more abstract spatial aggregates. It uses a data structure, the neighborhood graph, as a common interface to modularize computations. To illustrate our theory, we describe the computational structure of three implemented problem solvers -- KAM, MAPS, and HIPAIR --- in terms of the spatial aggregation generic operators by mixing and matching a library of commonly used routines.