Visual event-related potentials and reaction times in physical and semantic discrimination tasks were studied in 29 normal subjects between the ages of 21 and 74 years. The NA, N2 and P3 components of the evoked potential, and simple and GO/NOGO reaction times were observed in both kinds of discrimination. Significant age-related slowing of the GO/NOGO reaction time was observed only in the semantic discrimination task. The N2 and P3 latencies elicited by both the physical and semantic stimuli were significantly and positively correlated with age, although there was no significant correlation between the NA latency and age. The interpeak latency between N2 and P3 showed no age-related changes. The decline of cognitive information processing with advancing age was evident from the classification of a perceived event as reflected by the N2 component.