Abstract

This paper presents a new algorithm for detecting objects in images, one of the fundamental tasks of computer vision. The algorithm extends the representational efficiency of eigenimage methods to binary features, which are less sensitive to illumination changes than gray-level values normally used with eigenimages. Binary features (square subtemplates) are automatically chosen on each training image. Using features rather than whole templates makes the algorithm more robust to background clutter and partial occlusions. Instead of representing the features with real-valued eigenvector principle components, we use binary vector quantization to avoid floating point computations. The object is detected in the image using a simple geometric hash table and Hough transform. On a test of 1000 images, the algorithm works on 99.3%. We present a theoretical analysis of the algorithm in terms of the receiver operating characteristic, which consists of the probabilities of detection and false alarm. We verify this analysis with the results of our 1000-image test, and we use the analysis as a principled way to select some of the algorithm’s important operating parameters.