BCN Perceptual Computing Lab Repository

Probabilistic Darwin Machines: A new approach to develop Evolutionary Object Detection Systems

Baró, Xavier (2009) Probabilistic Darwin Machines: A new approach to develop Evolutionary Object Detection Systems. PhD thesis, Computer Vision Center, UAB.

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Ever since computers were invented, we have wondered whether they might perform some of the human quotidian tasks. One of the most studied and still nowadays less understood problem is the capacity to learn from our experiences and how we generalize the knowledge that we acquire. One of that unaware tasks for the persons and that more interest is awakening in different scientific areas since the beginning, is the one that is known as pattern recognition. The creation of models that represent the world that surrounds us, help us for recognizing objects in our environment, to predict situations, to identify behaviors... All this information allows us to adapt ourselves and to interact with our environment. The capacity of adaptation of individuals to their environment has been related to the amount of patterns that are capable of identifying. When we speak about pattern recognition in the field of Computer Vision, we refer to the ability to identify objects using the information contained in one or more images. Although the progress in the last years, and the fact that nowadays we are already able to obtain "useful" results in real environments, we are still very far from having a system with the same capacity of abstraction and robustness as the human visual system. In this thesis, the face detector of Viola \& Jones is studied as the paradigmatic and most extended approach to the object detection problem. Firstly, we analyze the way to describe the objects using comparisons of the illumination values in adjacent zones of the images, and how this information is organized later to create more complex structures. As a result of this study, two weak points are identified in this family of methods: The first makes reference to the description of the objects, and the second is a limitation of the learning algorithm, which hampers the utilization of best descriptors. Describing objects using Haar-like features limits the extracted information to connected regions of the object. In the case we want to compare distant zones, large contiguous regions must be used, which provokes that the obtained values depend more on the average of lighting values of the object than in the regions we are wanted to compare. With the goal to be able to use this type of non local information, we introduce the Dissociated Dipoles into the outline of objects detection. The problem using this type of descriptors is that the great cardinality of this feature set makes unfeasible the use of Adaboost as learning algorithm. The reason is that during the learning process, an exhaustive search is made over the space of hypotheses, and since it is enormous, the necessary time for learning becomes prohibitive. Although we studied this phenomenon on the Viola \& Jones approach, it is a general problem for most of the approaches, where learning methods introduce a limitation on the descriptors that can be used, and therefore, on the quality of the object description. In order to remove this limitation, we introduce evolutionary methods into the Adaboost algorithm, studying the effects of this modification on the learning ability. Our experiments conclude that not only it continues being able to learn, but its convergence speed is not significantly altered. This new Adaboost with evolutionary strategies opens the door to the use of feature sets with an arbitrary cardinality, which allows us to investigate new ways to describe our objects, such as the use of Dissociated Dipoles. We first compare the learning ability of this evolutionary Adaboost using Haar-like features and Dissociated Dipoles, and from the results of this comparison, we conclude that both types of descriptors have similar representation power, but depends on the problem they are applied, one adapts a little better than the other. With the aim of obtaining a descriptor capable of share the strong points from both Haar-like and Dissociated Dipoles, we propose a new type of feature, the Weighted Dissociated Dipoles, which combines the robustness of the structure detectors present in the Haar-like features, with the Dissociated Dipoles ability to use non local information. In the experiments we carried out, this new feature set obtains better results in all problems we test, compared with the use of Haar-like features and Dissociated Dipoles. In order to test the performance of each method, and compare the different methods, we use a set of public databases, which covers face detection, text detection, pedestrian detection, and cars detection. In addition, our methods are tested to face a traffic sign detection problem, over large databases containing both, road and urban scenes.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Subjects:Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science
ID Code:14
Deposited By:Xavier Baró
Deposited On:12 Jun 2009 02:52
Last Modified:29 Nov 2010 17:52

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