In this paper we present a novel unsupervised approach to detecting and segmenting objects as well as their constituent symmetric parts in an image. Traditional unsupervised image segmentation is limited by two obvious deficiencies: the object detection accuracy degrades with the misaligned boundaries between the segmented regions and the target, and pre-learned models are required to group regions into meaningful objects. To tackle these difficulties, the proposed approach aims at incorporating the pair-wise detection of symmetric patches to achieve the goal of segmenting images into symmetric parts. The skeletons of these symmetric parts then provide estimates of the bounding boxes to locate the target objects. Finally, for each detected object, the graphcut-based segmentation algorithm is applied to find its contour. The proposed approach has significant advantages: no a priori
object models are used, and multiple objects are detected. To verify the effectiveness of the approach based on the cues that a face part contains an oval shape and skin colors, human objects are extracted from among the detected objects. The detected human objects and their parts are finally tracked across video frames to capture the object part movements for learning the human activity models from video clips. Experimental results show that the proposed method gives good performance on publicly available datasets.
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