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Proceedings Paper

Evaluating HDR photos using Web 2.0 technology
Author(s): Guoping Qiu; Yujie Mei; Jiang Duan
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Paper Abstract

High dynamic range (HDR) photography is an emerging technology that has the potential to dramatically enhance the visual quality and realism of digital photos. One of the key technical challenges of HDR photography is displaying HDR photos on conventional devices through tone mapping or dynamic range compression. Although many different tone mapping techniques have been developed in recent years, evaluating tone mapping operators prove to be extremely difficult. Web2.0, social media and crowd-sourcing are emerging Internet technologies which can be harnessed to harvest the brain power of the mass to solve difficult problems in science, engineering and businesses. Paired comparison is used in the scientific study of preferences and attitudes and has been shown to be capable of obtaining an interval-scale ordering of items along a psychometric dimension such as preference or importance. In this paper, we exploit these technologies for evaluating HDR tone mapping algorithms. We have developed a Web2.0 style system that enables Internet users from anywhere to evaluate tone mapped HDR photos at any time. We adopt a simple paired comparison protocol, Internet users are presented a pair of tone mapped images and are simply asked to select the one that they think is better or click a "no difference" button. These user inputs are collected in the web server and analyzed by a rank aggregation algorithm which ranks the tone mapped photos according to the votes they received. We present experimental results which demonstrate that the emerging Internet technologies can be exploited as a new paradigm for evaluating HDR tone mapping algorithms. The advantages of this approach include the potential of collecting large user inputs under a variety of viewing environments rather than limited user participation under controlled laboratory environments thus enabling more robust and reliable quality assessment. We also present data analysis to correlate user generated qualitative indices with quantitative image statistics which may provide useful guidance for developing better tone mapping operators.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 January 2011
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 7867, Image Quality and System Performance VIII, 78670P (24 January 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.872387
Show Author Affiliations
Guoping Qiu, The Univ. of Nottingham (United Kingdom)
Yujie Mei, The Univ. of Nottingham (United Kingdom)
Jiang Duan, Southwest Univ. of Finance and Economics (China)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7867:
Image Quality and System Performance VIII
Susan P. Farnand; Frans Gaykema, Editor(s)

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