Performance Evaluation of Local Colour Invariants
In this paper, we compare local colour descriptors to grey-value descriptors. We adopt the evaluation framework of Mikolayzcyk and Schmid. We modify the framework in several ways. We decompose the evaluation framework to the level of local grey-value invariants on which common region descriptors are based. We compare the discriminative power and invariance of grey-value invariants to that of colour invariants. In addition, we evaluate the invariance of colour descriptors to photometric events such as shadow and highlights. We measure the performance over an extended range of common recording conditions including significant photometric variation. We demonstrate the intensity-normalized colour invariants and the shadow invariants to be highly distinctive, while the shadow invariants are more robust to both changes of the illumination colour, and to changes of the shading and shadows. Overall, the shadow invariants perform best: they are most robust to various imaging conditions while maintaining discriminative power. When plugged into the SIFT descriptor, they show to outperform other methods that have combined colour information and SIFT. The usefulness of C-colour-SIFT for realistic computer vision applications is illustrated for the classification of object categories from the VOC challenge, for which a significant improvement is reported.