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Unifying Colour Constancy

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In this paper we consider the problem of colour constancy; how given an image of a scene under an unknown illuminant can we recover an estimate of that light? We develop a general correlation framework in which solving for colour constancy is posed as a correlation of the colours in an image with the colours that can occur under each of a set of possible lights. Rather than attempting to recover a single estimate of the illuminant as many previous authors have done, we, in the first instance, recover a correlation measure for each possible illuminant. We then select an estimate of the scene illuminant based on these correlations.

The work presented here follows from previously published [9] work. In this paper we extend that work by showing that the correlation framework is rich enough to allow many existing algorithms to be expressed within it. The grey-world, maximum RGB, gamut mapping, and Maloney Wandell algorithms, perhaps the algorithms most widely cited in the literature, are presented in this correlation framework. This work together with work published elsewhere [7] shows that almost all published algorithms based on a Mondrian world can be formulated in the framework presented here. Significantly, the correlation framework can be used to add value to existing algorithms. For example, some of the problems associated with the Maloney-Wandell algorithm can be removed.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 1999

More about this publication?
  • CIC is the premier annual technical gathering for scientists, technologists, and engineers working in the areas of color science and systems, and their application to color imaging. Participants represent disciplines ranging from psychophysics, optical physics, image processing, color science to graphic arts, systems engineering, and hardware and software development. While a broad mix of professional interests is the hallmark of these conferences, the focus is color. CICs traditionally offer two days of short courses followed by three days of technical sessions that include three keynotes, an evening lecture, a vibrant interactive (poster) papers session, and workshops. An endearing symbol of the meeting is the Cactus Award, given each year to the author(s) of the best interactive paper; there are also Best Paper and Best Student Paper awards.

    Please note: for Purposes of its Digital Library content, IS&T defines Open Access as papers that will be downloadable in their entirety for free in perpetuity. Copyright restrictions on papers vary; see individual paper for details.

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