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MapSnapper - a new algorithm for digital map technology


New technology to enhance digital map technology is being presented by an ECS academic at the Electronic Imaging conference in California this week.

Dr Jonathon Hare from the School of Electronics & Computer Science (ECS) will deliver a presentation entitled 'MapSnapper: Engineering an efficient algorithm for matching images of maps from mobile phones', at the Electronic Imaging conference taking place in San Jose, California, USA, from 27-31 January.

Dr Hare, who carried out this research in conjunction with Professor Paul Lewis at ECS, will describe how he and his team developed MapSnapper, a robust algorithm to enable mobile phone users to take a photograph of a section of a map with a camera phone and have returned to them a high quality photograph of the section with points of interest added which the user can investigate further by clicking on them.

‘The vision was a product that would allow users to query a remote information system based on photos of a paper map taken with a camera phone,’ said Dr Hare. ‘The information system could then return useful information to the user via the device. For example, the returned information could include such things as events, facilities, opening times and accommodation in the selected geographical area.’

Dr Hare will describe how the algorithm combines a number of computer vision techniques, including interest point extraction and local description generator with multidimensional indexing. The outcome of this research is a fast robust algorithm which enhances the quality of mobile digital technology.

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Posted by Joyce Lewis on 29 Jan 2008.