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Title: New methods, techniques and applications for sketch recognition
Authors: De Rosa, Mattia
Persiano, Giuseppe
Castagliola, Gerardo
Fuccella, Vittorio
Keywords: Sketch recognition
Issue Date: 24-Apr-2014
Publisher: Universita degli studi di Salerno
Abstract: The use of diagrams is common in various disciplines. Typical examples include maps, line graphs, bar charts, engineering blueprints, architects’ sketches, hand drawn schematics, etc.. In general, diagrams can be created either by using pen and paper, or by using specific computer programs. These programs provide functions to facilitate the creation of the diagram, such as copy-and-paste, but the classic WIMP interfaces they use are unnatural when compared to pen and paper. Indeed, it is not rare that a designer prefers to use pen and paper at the beginning of the design, and then transfer the diagram to the computer later. To avoid this double step, a solution is to allow users to sketch directly on the computer. This requires both specific hardware and sketch recognition based software. As regards hardware, many pen/touch based devices such as tablets, smartphones, interactive boards and tables, etc. are available today, also at reasonable costs. Sketch recognition is needed when the sketch must be processed and not considered as a simple image and it is crucial to the success of this new modality of interaction. It is a difficult problem due to the inherent imprecision and ambiguity of a freehand drawing and to the many domains of applications. The aim of this thesis is to propose new methods and applications regarding the sketch recognition. The presentation of the results is divided into several contributions, facing problems such as corner detection, sketched symbol recognition and autocompletion, graphical context detection, sketched Euler diagram interpretation. The first contribution regards the problem of detecting the corners present in a stroke. Corner detection is often performed during preprocessing to segment a stroke in single simple geometric primitives such as lines or curves. The corner recognizer proposed in this thesis, RankFrag, is inspired by the method proposed by Ouyang and Davis in 2011 and improves the accuracy percentages compared to other methods recently proposed in the literature. The second contribution is a new method to recognize multi-stroke hand drawn symbols, which is invariant with respect to scaling and supports symbol recognition independently from the number and order of strokes. The method is an adaptation of the algorithm proposed by Belongie et al. in 2002 to the case of sketched images. This is achieved by using stroke related information. The method has been evaluated on a set of more than 100 symbols from the Military Course of Action domain and the results show that the new recognizer outperforms the original one. The third contribution is a new method for recognizing multi-stroke partially hand drawn symbols which is invariant with respect to scale, and supports symbol recognition independently from the number and order of strokes. The recognition technique is based on subgraph isomorphism and exploits a novel spatial descriptor, based on polar histograms, to represent relations between two stroke primitives. The tests show that the approach gives a satisfactory recognition rate with partially drawn symbols, also with a very low level of drawing completion, and outperforms the existing approaches proposed in the literature. Furthermore, as an application, a system presenting a user interface to draw symbols and implementing the proposed autocompletion approach has been developed. Moreover a user study aimed at evaluating the human performance in hand drawn symbol autocompletion has been presented. Using the set of symbols from the Military Course of Action domain, the user study evaluates the conditions under which the users are willing to exploit the autocompletion functionality and those under which they can use it efficiently. The results show that the autocompletion functionality can be used in a profitable way, with a drawing time saving of about 18%. The fourth contribution regards the detection of the graphical context of hand drawn symbols, and in particular, the development of an approach for identifying attachment areas on sketched symbols. In the field of syntactic recognition of hand drawn visual languages, the recognition of the relations among graphical symbols is one of the first important tasks to be accomplished and is usually reduced to recognize the attachment areas of each symbol and the relations among them. The approach is independent from the method used to recognize symbols and assumes that the symbol has already been recognized. The approach is evaluated through a user study aimed at comparing the attachment areas detected by the system to those devised by the users. The results show that the system can identify attachment areas with a reasonable accuracy. The last contribution is EulerSketch, an interactive system for the sketching and interpretation of Euler diagrams (EDs). The interpretation of a hand drawn ED produces two types of text encodings of the ED topology called static code and ordered Gauss paragraph (OGP) code, and a further encoding of its regions. Given the topology of an ED expressed through static or OGP code, EulerSketch automatically generates a new topologically equivalent ED in its graphical representation. [edited by author]
Description: 2012-2013
Appears in Collections:Informatica

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