Learning invariant structure for object identification by using graph methods

Bai Xiao, Yi Zhe Song, Peter Hall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (SciVal)


The problem of learning the class identity of visual objects has received considerable attention recently. With rare exception, all of the work to date assumes low variation in appearance, which limits them to a single depictive style usually photographic. The same object depicted in other styles - as a drawing, perhaps - cannot be identified reliably. Yet humans are able to name the object no matter how it is depicted, and even recognize a real object having previously seen only a drawing. This paper describes a classifier which is unique in being able to learn class identity no matter how the class instances are depicted. The key to this is our proposition that topological structure is a class invariant. Practically, we depend on spectral graph analysis of a hierarchical description of an image to construct a feature vector of fixed dimension. Hence structure is transformed to a feature vector, which can be classified using standard methods. We demonstrate the classifier on several diverse classes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1023-1031
Number of pages9
JournalComputer Vision and Image Understanding
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2011


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