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2014


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Simultaneous Underwater Visibility Assessment, Enhancement and Improved Stereo

Roser, M., Dunbabin, M., Geiger, A.

IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, pages: 3840 - 3847 , Hong Kong, China, June 2014 (conference)

Abstract
Vision-based underwater navigation and obstacle avoidance demands robust computer vision algorithms, particularly for operation in turbid water with reduced visibility. This paper describes a novel method for the simultaneous underwater image quality assessment, visibility enhancement and disparity computation to increase stereo range resolution under dynamic, natural lighting and turbid conditions. The technique estimates the visibility properties from a sparse 3D map of the original degraded image using a physical underwater light attenuation model. Firstly, an iterated distance-adaptive image contrast enhancement enables a dense disparity computation and visibility estimation. Secondly, using a light attenuation model for ocean water, a color corrected stereo underwater image is obtained along with a visibility distance estimate. Experimental results in shallow, naturally lit, high-turbidity coastal environments show the proposed technique improves range estimation over the original images as well as image quality and color for habitat classification. Furthermore, the recursiveness and robustness of the technique allows real-time implementation onboard an Autonomous Underwater Vehicles for improved navigation and obstacle avoidance performance.

pdf DOI [BibTex]

2014

pdf DOI [BibTex]


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Preserving Modes and Messages via Diverse Particle Selection

Pacheco, J., Zuffi, S., Black, M. J., Sudderth, E.

In Proceedings of the 31st International Conference on Machine Learning (ICML-14), 32(1):1152-1160, J. Machine Learning Research Workshop and Conf. and Proc., Beijing, China, June 2014 (inproceedings)

Abstract
In applications of graphical models arising in domains such as computer vision and signal processing, we often seek the most likely configurations of high-dimensional, continuous variables. We develop a particle-based max-product algorithm which maintains a diverse set of posterior mode hypotheses, and is robust to initialization. At each iteration, the set of hypotheses at each node is augmented via stochastic proposals, and then reduced via an efficient selection algorithm. The integer program underlying our optimization-based particle selection minimizes errors in subsequent max-product message updates. This objective automatically encourages diversity in the maintained hypotheses, without requiring tuning of application-specific distances among hypotheses. By avoiding the stochastic resampling steps underlying particle sum-product algorithms, we also avoid common degeneracies where particles collapse onto a single hypothesis. Our approach significantly outperforms previous particle-based algorithms in experiments focusing on the estimation of human pose from single images.

pdf SupMat link (url) Project Page Project Page [BibTex]

pdf SupMat link (url) Project Page Project Page [BibTex]


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Calibrating and Centering Quasi-Central Catadioptric Cameras

Schoenbein, M., Strauss, T., Geiger, A.

IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, pages: 4443 - 4450, Hong Kong, China, June 2014 (conference)

Abstract
Non-central catadioptric models are able to cope with irregular camera setups and inaccuracies in the manufacturing process but are computationally demanding and thus not suitable for robotic applications. On the other hand, calibrating a quasi-central (almost central) system with a central model introduces errors due to a wrong relationship between the viewing ray orientations and the pixels on the image sensor. In this paper, we propose a central approximation to quasi-central catadioptric camera systems that is both accurate and efficient. We observe that the distance to points in 3D is typically large compared to deviations from the single viewpoint. Thus, we first calibrate the system using a state-of-the-art non-central camera model. Next, we show that by remapping the observations we are able to match the orientation of the viewing rays of a much simpler single viewpoint model with the true ray orientations. While our approximation is general and applicable to all quasi-central camera systems, we focus on one of the most common cases in practice: hypercatadioptric cameras. We compare our model to a variety of baselines in synthetic and real localization and motion estimation experiments. We show that by using the proposed model we are able to achieve near non-central accuracy while obtaining speed-ups of more than three orders of magnitude compared to state-of-the-art non-central models.

pdf DOI [BibTex]

pdf DOI [BibTex]


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Modeling the Human Body in 3D: Data Registration and Human Shape Representation

Tsoli, A.

Brown University, Department of Computer Science, May 2014 (phdthesis)

pdf [BibTex]

pdf [BibTex]


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Probabilistic Solutions to Differential Equations and their Application to Riemannian Statistics

Hennig, P., Hauberg, S.

In Proceedings of the 17th International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics, 33, pages: 347-355, JMLR: Workshop and Conference Proceedings, (Editors: S Kaski and J Corander), Microtome Publishing, Brookline, MA, April 2014 (inproceedings)

Abstract
We study a probabilistic numerical method for the solution of both boundary and initial value problems that returns a joint Gaussian process posterior over the solution. Such methods have concrete value in the statistics on Riemannian manifolds, where non-analytic ordinary differential equations are involved in virtually all computations. The probabilistic formulation permits marginalising the uncertainty of the numerical solution such that statistics are less sensitive to inaccuracies. This leads to new Riemannian algorithms for mean value computations and principal geodesic analysis. Marginalisation also means results can be less precise than point estimates, enabling a noticeable speed-up over the state of the art. Our approach is an argument for a wider point that uncertainty caused by numerical calculations should be tracked throughout the pipeline of machine learning algorithms.

pdf Youtube Supplements Project page link (url) [BibTex]

pdf Youtube Supplements Project page link (url) [BibTex]


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Multi-View Priors for Learning Detectors from Sparse Viewpoint Data

Pepik, B., Stark, M., Gehler, P., Schiele, B.

International Conference on Learning Representations, April 2014 (conference)

Abstract
While the majority of today's object class models provide only 2D bounding boxes, far richer output hypotheses are desirable including viewpoint, fine-grained category, and 3D geometry estimate. However, models trained to provide richer output require larger amounts of training data, preferably well covering the relevant aspects such as viewpoint and fine-grained categories. In this paper, we address this issue from the perspective of transfer learning, and design an object class model that explicitly leverages correlations between visual features. Specifically, our model represents prior distributions over permissible multi-view detectors in a parametric way -- the priors are learned once from training data of a source object class, and can later be used to facilitate the learning of a detector for a target class. As we show in our experiments, this transfer is not only beneficial for detectors based on basic-level category representations, but also enables the robust learning of detectors that represent classes at finer levels of granularity, where training data is typically even scarcer and more unbalanced. As a result, we report largely improved performance in simultaneous 2D object localization and viewpoint estimation on a recent dataset of challenging street scenes.

reviews pdf Project Page [BibTex]

reviews pdf Project Page [BibTex]


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NRSfM using Local Rigidity

Rehan, A., Zaheer, A., Akhter, I., Saeed, A., Mahmood, B., Usmani, M., Khan, S.

In Proceedings Winter Conference on Applications of Computer Vision, pages: 69-74, open access, IEEE , Steamboat Springs, CO, USA, March 2014 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Factorization methods for computation of nonrigid structure have limited practicality, and work well only when there is large enough camera motion between frames, with long sequences and limited or no occlusions. We show that typical nonrigid structure can often be approximated well as locally rigid sub-structures in time and space. Specifically, we assume that: 1) the structure can be approximated as rigid in a short local time window and 2) some point pairs stay relatively rigid in space, maintaining a fixed distance between them during the sequence. We first use the triangulation constraints in rigid SFM over a sliding time window to get an initial estimate of the nonrigid 3D structure. We then automatically identify relatively rigid point pairs in this structure, and use their length-constancy simultaneously with triangulation constraints to refine the structure estimate. Unlike factorization methods, the structure is estimated independent of the camera motion computation, adding to the simplicity and stability of the approach. Further, local factorization inherently handles significant natural occlusions gracefully, performing much better than the state-of-the art. We show more stable and accurate results as compared to the state-of-the art on even short sequences starting from 15 frames only, containing camera rotations as small as 2 degree and up to 50% missing data.

link (url) [BibTex]

link (url) [BibTex]


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Model-based Anthropometry: Predicting Measurements from 3D Human Scans in Multiple Poses

Tsoli, A., Loper, M., Black, M. J.

In Proceedings Winter Conference on Applications of Computer Vision, pages: 83-90, IEEE , March 2014 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Extracting anthropometric or tailoring measurements from 3D human body scans is important for applications such as virtual try-on, custom clothing, and online sizing. Existing commercial solutions identify anatomical landmarks on high-resolution 3D scans and then compute distances or circumferences on the scan. Landmark detection is sensitive to acquisition noise (e.g. holes) and these methods require subjects to adopt a specific pose. In contrast, we propose a solution we call model-based anthropometry. We fit a deformable 3D body model to scan data in one or more poses; this model-based fitting is robust to scan noise. This brings the scan into registration with a database of registered body scans. Then, we extract features from the registered model (rather than from the scan); these include, limb lengths, circumferences, and statistical features of global shape. Finally, we learn a mapping from these features to measurements using regularized linear regression. We perform an extensive evaluation using the CAESAR dataset and demonstrate that the accuracy of our method outperforms state-of-the-art methods.

pdf DOI Project Page Project Page [BibTex]

pdf DOI Project Page Project Page [BibTex]


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Evaluation of feature-based 3-d registration of probabilistic volumetric scenes

Restrepo, M. I., Ulusoy, A. O., Mundy, J. L.

In ISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, 98(0):1-18, 2014 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Automatic estimation of the world surfaces from aerial images has seen much attention and progress in recent years. Among current modeling technologies, probabilistic volumetric models (PVMs) have evolved as an alternative representation that can learn geometry and appearance in a dense and probabilistic manner. Recent progress, in terms of storage and speed, achieved in the area of volumetric modeling, opens the opportunity to develop new frameworks that make use of the {PVM} to pursue the ultimate goal of creating an entire map of the earth, where one can reason about the semantics and dynamics of the 3-d world. Aligning 3-d models collected at different time-instances constitutes an important step for successful fusion of large spatio-temporal information. This paper evaluates how effectively probabilistic volumetric models can be aligned using robust feature-matching techniques, while considering different scenarios that reflect the kind of variability observed across aerial video collections from different time instances. More precisely, this work investigates variability in terms of discretization, resolution and sampling density, errors in the camera orientation, and changes in illumination and geographic characteristics. All results are given for large-scale, outdoor sites. In order to facilitate the comparison of the registration performance of {PVMs} to that of other 3-d reconstruction techniques, the registration pipeline is also carried out using Patch-based Multi-View Stereo (PMVS) algorithm. Registration performance is similar for scenes that have favorable geometry and the appearance characteristics necessary for high quality reconstruction. In scenes containing trees, such as a park, or many buildings, such as a city center, registration performance is significantly more accurate when using the PVM.

Publisher site link (url) DOI [BibTex]

Publisher site link (url) DOI [BibTex]


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Human Pose Estimation from Video and Inertial Sensors

Pons-Moll, G.

Ph.D Thesis, -, 2014 (book)

Abstract
The analysis and understanding of human movement is central to many applications such as sports science, medical diagnosis and movie production. The ability to automatically monitor human activity in security sensitive areas such as airports, lobbies or borders is of great practical importance. Furthermore, automatic pose estimation from images leverages the processing and understanding of massive digital libraries available on the Internet. We build upon a model based approach where the human shape is modelled with a surface mesh and the motion is parametrized by a kinematic chain. We then seek for the pose of the model that best explains the available observations coming from different sensors. In a first scenario, we consider a calibrated mult-iview setup in an indoor studio. To obtain very accurate results, we propose a novel tracker that combines information coming from video and a small set of Inertial Measurement Units (IMUs). We do so by locally optimizing a joint energy consisting of a term that measures the likelihood of the video data and a term for the IMU data. This is the first work to successfully combine video and IMUs information for full body pose estimation. When compared to commercial marker based systems the proposed solution is more cost efficient and less intrusive for the user. In a second scenario, we relax the assumption of an indoor studio and we tackle outdoor scenes with background clutter, illumination changes, large recording volumes and difficult motions of people interacting with objects. Again, we combine information from video and IMUs. Here we employ a particle based optimization approach that allows us to be more robust to tracking failures. To satisfy the orientation constraints imposed by the IMUs, we derive an analytic Inverse Kinematics (IK) procedure to sample from the manifold of valid poses. The generated hypothesis come from a lower dimensional manifold and therefore the computational cost can be reduced. Experiments on challenging sequences suggest the proposed tracker can be applied to capture in outdoor scenarios. Furthermore, the proposed IK sampling procedure can be used to integrate any kind of constraints derived from the environment. Finally, we consider the most challenging possible scenario: pose estimation of monocular images. Here, we argue that estimating the pose to the degree of accuracy as in an engineered environment is too ambitious with the current technology. Therefore, we propose to extract meaningful semantic information about the pose directly from image features in a discriminative fashion. In particular, we introduce posebits which are semantic pose descriptors about the geometric relationships between parts in the body. The experiments show that the intermediate step of inferring posebits from images can improve pose estimation from monocular imagery. Furthermore, posebits can be very useful as input feature for many computer vision algorithms.

pdf [BibTex]


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Left Ventricle Segmentation by Dynamic Shape Constrained Random Walk

X. Yang, Y. Su, M. Wan, S. Y. Yeo, C. Lim, S. T. Wong, L. Zhong, R. S. Tan

In Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, 2014 (inproceedings)

Abstract
Accurate and robust extraction of the left ventricle (LV) cavity is a key step for quantitative analysis of cardiac functions. In this study, we propose an improved LV cavity segmentation method that incorporates a dynamic shape constraint into the weighting function of the random walks algorithm. The method involves an iterative process that updates an intermediate result to the desired solution. The shape constraint restricts the solution space of the segmentation result, such that the robustness of the algorithm is increased to handle misleading information that emanates from noise, weak boundaries, and clutter. Our experiments on real cardiac magnetic resonance images demonstrate that the proposed method obtains better segmentation performance than standard method.

[BibTex]

[BibTex]