The role of fixation in visual motion analysis

TitleThe role of fixation in visual motion analysis
Publication TypeJournal Articles
Year of Publication1993
AuthorsFermüller C, Aloimonos Y
JournalInternational Journal of Computer Vision
Pagination165 - 186
Date Published1993///
ISBN Number0920-5691

How does the ability of humans and primates to fixate at environmental points in the presence of relative motion help their visual systems in solving various tasks? To state the question in a more formal setting, we investigate in this article the following problem: Suppose that we have an active vision system, that is, a camera resting on a platform and being controlled through motors by a computer that has access to the images sensed by the camera in real time. The platform can move freely in the environment. If this machine can fixate on targets being in relative motion with it, can it solve visual tasks in an efficient and robust manner? By restricting our attention to a set of navigational tasks, we find that such an active observer can solve the problems of 3-D motion estimation, egomotion recovery, and estimation of time-to-contact in a very efficient manner, using as input the spatiotemporal derivatives of the image-intensity function (or normal flow). Fixation over time changes the input (motion field) in a controlled way and from this change additional information is derived making the previously mentioned tasks easier to solve.