Importance of detection for video surveillance applications

Javier Varona, Jordi Gonzàlez, Ignasi Rius, Juan José Villanueva

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Though it is the first step of a real video surveillance application, detection has received less attention than tracking in research on video surveillance. We show, however, that the majority of errors in the tracking task are due to wrong detection. We show this by experimenting with a multi object tracking algorithm based on a Bayesian framework and a particle filter. This algorithm, which we have named iTrack, is specifically designed to work in practical applications by defining a statistical model of the object appearance to build a robust likelihood function. Likewise, we present an extension of a background subtraction algorithm to deal with active cameras. This algorithm is used in the detection task to initialize the tracker by means of a prior density. By defining appropriate performance metrics, the overall system is evaluated to elucidate the importance of detection for video surveillance applications. © 2008 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers.
Original languageEnglish
Article number087201
JournalOptical Engineering
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2008


  • target detection
  • video surveillance
  • visual tracking


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