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Figure-ground segmentation by transferring window masks

Daniel Kuettel, Vittorio Ferrari
IEEE Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR)
June 2012


We present a novel technique for figure-ground segmentation, where the goal is to separate all foreground objects in a test image from the background. We decompose the test image and all images in a supervised training set into overlapping windows likely to cover foreground objects. The key idea is to transfer segmentation masks from training windows that are visually similar to windows in the test image. These transferred masks are then used to derive the unary potentials of a binary, pairwise energy function defined over the pixels of the test image, which is minimized with standard graph-cuts. This results in a fully automatic segmentation scheme, as opposed to interactive techniques based on similar energy functions. Using windows as support regions for transfer efficiently exploits the training data, as the test image does not need to be globally similar to a training image for the method to work. This enables to compose novel scenes using local parts of training images. Our approach obtains very competitive results on three datasets (PASCAL VOC 2010 segmentation challenge, Weizmann horses, Graz-02).

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  author = {Daniel Kuettel and Vittorio Ferrari},
  title = {Figure-ground segmentation by transferring window masks},
  booktitle = {IEEE Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR)},
  year = {2012},
  month = {June},
  keywords = {}