Logic and MRF Circuitry for Labeling Occluding and Thinline Visual Contours

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 18 (NIPS 2005)

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Eric Saund


This paper presents representation and logic for labeling contrast edges and ridges in visual scenes in terms of both surface occlusion (border ownership) and thinline objects. In natural scenes, thinline objects in- clude sticks and wires, while in human graphical communication thin- lines include connectors, dividers, and other abstract devices. Our analy- sis is directed at both natural and graphical domains. The basic problem is to formulate the logic of the interactions among local image events, specifically contrast edges, ridges, junctions, and alignment relations, such as to encode the natural constraints among these events in visual scenes. In a sparse heterogeneous Markov Random Field framework, we define a set of interpretation nodes and energy/potential functions among them. The minimum energy configuration found by Loopy Belief Prop- agation is shown to correspond to preferred human interpretation across a wide range of prototypical examples including important illusory con- tour figures such as the Kanizsa Triangle, as well as more difficult ex- amples. In practical terms, the approach delivers correct interpretations of inherently ambiguous hand-drawn box-and-connector diagrams at low computational cost.