Skeletal graphs for efficient structure from motion

Published by IEEE Computer Society

We address the problem of efficient structure from motion for large, unordered, highly redundant, and irregularly sampled photo collections, such as those found on Internet photo-sharing sites. Our approach computes a small skeletal subset of images, reconstructs the skeletal set, and adds the remaining images using pose estimation. Our technique drastically reduces the number of parameters that are considered, resulting in dramatic speedups, while provably approximating the covariance of the full set of parameters. To compute a skeletal image set, we first estimate the accuracy of two-frame reconstructions between pairs of overlapping images, then use a graph algorithm to select a subset of images that, when reconstructed, approximates the accuracy of the full set. A final bundle adjustment can then optionally be used to restore any loss of accuracy.