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Optical Engineering

Comparison of perceptual color spaces for natural image segmentation tasks
Author(s): Fernando E. Correa-Tome; Raul E. Sanchez-Yanez; Victor Ayala-Ramirez
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Paper Abstract

Color image segmentation largely depends on the color space chosen. Furthermore, spaces that show perceptual uniformity seem to outperform others due to their emulation of the human perception of color. We evaluate three perceptual color spaces, CIELAB, CIELUV, and RLAB, in order to determine their contribution to natural image segmentation and to identify the space that obtains the best results over a test set of images. The nonperceptual color space RGB is also included for reference purposes. In order to quantify the quality of resulting segmentations, an empirical discrepancy evaluation methodology is discussed. The Berkeley Segmentation Dataset and Benchmark is used in test series, and two approaches are taken to perform the experiments: supervised pixelwise classification using reference colors, and unsupervised clustering using k-means. A majority filter is used as a postprocessing stage, in order to determine its contribution to the result. Furthermore, a comparison of elapsed times taken by the required transformations is included. The main finding of our study is that the CIELUV color space outperforms the other color spaces in both discriminatory performance and computational speed, for the average case.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 November 2011
PDF: 12 pages
Opt. Eng. 50(11) 117203 doi: 10.1117/1.3651799
Published in: Optical Engineering Volume 50, Issue 11
Show Author Affiliations
Fernando E. Correa-Tome, Univ. de Guanajuato (Mexico)
Raul E. Sanchez-Yanez, Univ. de Guanajuato (Mexico)
Victor Ayala-Ramirez, Univ. de Guanajuato (Mexico)

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