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Toward Objective Evaluation of Image Segmentation Algorithms
June 2007 (vol. 29 no. 6)
pp. 929-944
Unsupervised image segmentation is an important component in many image understanding algorithms and practical vision systems. However, evaluation of segmentation algorithms thus far has been largely subjective, leaving a system designer to judge the effectiveness of a technique based only on intuition and results in the form of a few example segmented images. This is largely due to image segmentation being an ill-defined problem—there is no unique ground-truth segmentation of an image against which the output of an algorithm may be compared. This paper demonstrates how a recently proposed measure of similarity, the Normalized Probabilistic Rand (NPR) index, can be used to perform a quantitative comparison between image segmentation algorithms using a hand-labeled set of ground-truth segmentations. We show that the measure allows principled comparisons between segmentations created by different algorithms, as well as segmentations on different images. We outline a procedure for algorithm evaluation through an example evaluation of some familiar algorithms—the mean-shift-based algorithm, an efficient graph-based segmentation algorithm, a hybrid algorithm that combines the strengths of both methods, and expectation maximization. Results are presented on the 300 images in the publicly available Berkeley Segmentation Data Set.
Index Terms:
Computer vision, image segmentation, performance evaluation of algorithms.
Citation:
Ranjith Unnikrishnan, Caroline Pantofaru, Martial Hebert, "Toward Objective Evaluation of Image Segmentation Algorithms," IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence, vol. 29, no. 6, pp. 929-944, June 2007, doi:10.1109/TPAMI.2007.1046
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