Abstract Spatial analysis and spatial information systems have great potential in many non-geographic domains. This paper presents an example of the utility of spatial analysis in a non-geographic domain. A technique of pupillometry using digital infrared video loosely coupled with a Spatial Information System and a spreadsheet is developed to accurately quantify pupil dilation magnitude and constriction onset latency for participants of different cognitive ability and under different cognitive loads. Spatio-temporal pupil dynamics of participants are recorded using digital infrared video. The pupil to iris area ratio is calculated for over 470,000 temporally sequenced de-interlaced video fields by automatic feature extraction using a combination of threshold analysis, spatial smoothing and areal filtering. Pupil dilation magnitudes and constriction onset latencies are calculated through post-processing in a spreadsheet. The study identifies inadequacies in current spatial analytical techniques for automatic feature extraction not necessarily evident in geographic applications. Issues impeding the employment of spatial analysis in non-geographic domains including the lack of a generic spatial referencing system are identified and discussed.