17 June 2003 Psychophysical study of image orientation perception
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Abstract
This paper presents a psychophysical study on the perception of image orientation. Some natural images are extremely difficult even for humans to orient correctly or may not even have a "correct" orientation; the study provides an upper bound for the performance of an automatic system. Discrepant detection rates based on only low-level cues have been reported, ranging from exceptionally high in earlier work to more reasonable in recent work. This study allows us to put the reported results in the correct perspective. In addition, the use of a large, carefully chosen image set that spans the "photo space" (in terms of occasions and subject matter) and extensive interaction with the human observers should reveal cues used by humans at various image resolutions. These can be used to design a robust automatic algorithm for orientation detection. A collection of 1000 images (mix of professional photos and consumer snapshots) is used in this study. Each image is examined by at least five observers and shown at varying resolutions. Object recognition is expected to be more difficult (impossible for some images) at the lowest resolution and easier as the resolution increases. At each resolution, observers are asked to indicate the image orientation, the level of confidence, and the cues they used to make the decision. This study suggests that for typical images, the upper bound on accuracy is close to 98% when using all available semantic cues from high-resolution images and 84% if only low-level vision features and coarse semantics from thumbnails are used. The study also shows that sky and people are the most useful and reliable among a number of important semantic cues.
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Jiebo Luo, David Crandall, Amit Singhal, and Robert T. Gray "Psychophysical study of image orientation perception", Proc. SPIE 5007, Human Vision and Electronic Imaging VIII, (17 June 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.473896; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.473896
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