A search engine for 3D models

TitleA search engine for 3D models
Publication TypeJournal Articles
Year of Publication2003
AuthorsFunkhouser T, Min P, Kazhdan M, Chen J, Halderman A, Dobkin D, Jacobs DW
JournalACM Trans. Graph.
Pagination83 - 105
Date Published2003/01//
ISBN Number0730-0301
KeywordsSearch engine, shape matching, shape representation, shape retrieval

As the number of 3D models available on the Web grows, there is an increasing need for a search engine to help people find them. Unfortunately, traditional text-based search techniques are not always effective for 3D data. In this article, we investigate new shape-based search methods. The key challenges are to develop query methods simple enough for novice users and matching algorithms robust enough to work for arbitrary polygonal models. We present a Web-based search engine system that supports queries based on 3D sketches, 2D sketches, 3D models, and/or text keywords. For the shape-based queries, we have developed a new matching algorithm that uses spherical harmonics to compute discriminating similarity measures without requiring repair of model degeneracies or alignment of orientations. It provides 46 to 245% better performance than related shape-matching methods during precision--recall experiments, and it is fast enough to return query results from a repository of 20,000 models in under a second. The net result is a growing interactive index of 3D models available on the Web (i.e., a Google for 3D models).