How computers recognise videos
Driver assistance systems that recognise obstacles in road traffic, visual effects in films like Matrix, computer-animated characters and combined imaging processes in medicine: behind all these technologies lies a process that information researchers have been constantly working on improving for years, the so-called optical flow.
Prof. Andrés Bruhn from the Institute of Visualisation and Interactive Systems at the University of Stuttgart is a specialist in this field. At the “European Conference on Computer Vision“ in Zürich recently he was awarded the “Jan Koenderink Prize for Fundamental Contributions in Computer Vision“ jointly with colleagues for a method developed ten years ago. This is one of the most renowned prizes in the field of machine vision and honours works that have proven particularly valuable after a decade.
How can computers be put in a position to recognise movements in a video as accurately as possible? This question has been occupying computer science researchers for around 30 years. Since receiving his doctorate Prof. Andrés Bruhn has been dealing with the optical flow in order to accelerate the machine vision of video images and to improve them in terms of quality.
But what exactly is an optical flow? Broadly speaking what lies behind the method is an algorithm that observes each pixel of an individual video image and estimates its movement with regard to its reference image.
Numerous technologies can be realised using this principle. For example real non-existent intermediate images can be created in order to generate slow motion effects without loss of quality in the film industry or create computer-generated film sequences from video recordings. The face of an actor can be reconstructed in this way with realistic facial expressions and gestures and then be replaced by a virtual character. Also applications in the automotive field are based on the calculation of flow fields.
In this respect there are driver assistance systems that recognise distances to obstacles based on camera recordings, identify moving objects, predict collisions or make other statements on the traffic situation. Another sector of the economy in which the optical flow is used is medical image processing. For example recordings of different imaging processes are superimposed there to be able to investigate the growth of a tumour in more concrete terms, for instance.
“The available optical flow methods have proved their worth in many applications“, said Prof. Andrés Bruhn, “but still they are subject to a great number of restrictions. To minimise these further and to develop further fields of application is the objective of our work.“
His research team particularly deal with the utilisation of recordings with bad lighting or rapid movement or colour changes but also the concrete estimate of object arrangements in a room and the basic improvement of reconstructed computer models are the focus of their work.
This year Andrés Bruhn was awarded the Koenderink Prize for a method he had already developed with his colleagues Thomas Brox, Nils Papenberg and Joachim Weickert in 2004 whilst doing his doctorate at the University of Saarland. At the time the research team succeeded in greatly increasing the accuracy compared to methods already available.
The award is one of the most renowned prizes in the field of machine vision and honours works that have particularly proven their worth after a decade. Since its publication the work has been quoted over 1,200 times, clearly showing the special value of the work for science.
You can find the specialist article at
Tina Barthelmes, University of Stuttgart, Visualisation Institute (VISUS), Tel. 0711/685-88604,
Email: tina.barthelmes (at) visus.uni-stuttgart.de
Prof. Andrés Bruhn, Institute of Visualisation and Interactive Systems, Tel.: 0711/685-88439,
Email: andres.bruhn (at) vis.uni-stuttgart.de
Birgit Vennemann, University of Stuttgart, Department of University Communication, Tel. 0711/685-82122,
Email: birgit.vennemann (at) hkom.uni-stuttgart.de
Andrea Mayer-Grenu | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft
Five developments for improved data exploitation
19.04.2017 | Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Künstliche Intelligenz GmbH, DFKI
Smart Manual Workstations Deliver More Flexible Production
04.04.2017 | Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Künstliche Intelligenz GmbH, DFKI
More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.
Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...
Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.
"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...
The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.
Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...
The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...
Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.
Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...
20.04.2017 | Event News
18.04.2017 | Event News
03.04.2017 | Event News
25.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
25.04.2017 | Materials Sciences
25.04.2017 | Life Sciences