RGB+D Video Processing


What is RGB+D video?Edit

  • 2.5D data
  • 3D sensing (Stereo, Structured Light, TOF, laser scanner, ...)


Vector, matrix and scalar

 * vector (lowercase Gothic alphabets): v, p, m = [m1, m2, ..., mk]', ...
 * matrix (uppercase Gothic alphabets): R, A, ...
 * scalar (Italic alphabets: s, t, X, Y, Z, ...


   v(1)   // the 1st element of the vector v
   R(1,2) // the 1st row and 2nd col of the matrix R
   A(:,1) // the 1st vector _ from A = [v1, v2, ..., vN]

Some reserved symbols

hp: a homogeneous representation of a 2D point, hp = [u, v, 1]'
hx: a homogeneous representation of a 3D point, hx = [X, Y, Z, 1]'
p: a 2D point, p = [u, v]'
x: a 3D point, x = [X, Y, Z]'
H: (3x3) planar homography matrix
P: (3x4) projective projection matrix

Coordinate transformations

o<W>: the origin of the world frame
o<C>: the origin of the camera frame
o<O>: the origin of the object frame
(e.g., x<C> represents a 3D point in the camera frame)
R: (3x3) rotation matrix
t: (3x1) translation vector
T<n, m>: transformation from m to n coordinate system (e.g., o<C> = T<C, W> o<W>)
  • We use the (first) camera coordinate frame as the world reference frame unless we specify it.
  • Besides above notations, we will follow MATLAB's notations.

Coordinate transformationEdit

When you take a 3D point,  X = [x_1, x_2, x_3]^T , each value x(j) of the point is represented with respect to a specific coordinate system (e.g., the sensor coordinate system). The point X can also be represented in a different coordinate system (e.g., a corner of the room),  X' = [x'_1, x'_2, x'_3]^T . To distinguish between two set of values, we can write the symbol along with the corresponding coordinate system:  X^s = [x_1, x_2, x_3]^T and  X^c = [x'_1, x'_2, x'_3]^T , where  X^s is a point w.r.t. the sensor coordinate system and  X^c is the same point w.r.t. the corner coordinate system. There is a rigid motion between two coordinate systems and the motion is expressed by a (3×3) rotation matrix R and a (3×1) translation vector t:  X^s = R X^c + t . In homogeneous coordinate system, the rigid motion can be written as  X^s = {^s}T_c X^c, {^s}T_c = [{^s}R_c, {^s}t_c; 0, 0, 0, 1] . Note that we put the symbol of the source coordinate system (corner) and the target system (sensor). A series of transformations is represented as  X^s = {^s}T_{s_3} {^{s_3}}T_{s_2} {^{s_2}}T_{s_1}c {^{s_1}}T_c X^c , where  {^s}T_{c} = {^s}T_{s_3} {^{s_3}}T_{s_2} {^{s_2}}T_{s_1}c {^{s_1}}T_c .


Why calibration?

Overall process:

 a) RGB camera ---- RGB image --(1)-- Rectified RGB image --(3)-- Registered RGB image (w.r.t. IR image)
 b) IR camera ---- IR image --(2)--  Rectified IR image
 c) projector --(internal calibration + IR image)-- Depth image --(4)-- Rectified Depth image --(5)-- 3D points                         
  • Prob. 1: (1), (2), (4) - radial distortion
  • Method:



  • Prob. 2: (3) - registration of RGB image to IR image
  • Method: planar homography

  • Prob. 3: (5) - 3D reconstruction
  • Method: triangulation
  • All in one


Geometric primitives and uncertaintyEdit

points and lines in 2D spaceEdit

Geometric entitiesEdit

  • The entity x is homogenous when x and s*x represent the same geometric entity.
  • Points: A 2D point xx = [x1, x2]' in Euclidean space is represented as x = [x1, x2, 1]' in 2D projective space.
  • Lines: A 2D line is expressed as l = [a b c]'.

Geometric Relations in 2DEdit

  • The dot product between a line and a point of the line is 0: x' * l == 0.
A line equation in 2D Euclidean space is a*x + b*y + c == 0. We can rewrite it as [a b c] * [x y 1]' == 0, which is the the dot product. So, in projective space, dot(x,l) == x' * l == 0.
  • The cross product between two lines give the intersection point: x = cross(l,m).
Intersection of two lines (l and m) is a point. The intersection point x is in the line l: dot(x,l) = 0. Also, the point x is in the line m: dot(x,m) = 0. Therefore, the cross product of l, m gives the intersection point x.
  • The cross product between two points give the line: l = cross(x, y).
  • Two points: || x - y ||
  • Two lines: || l x m ||
  • Two line segments:

points, lines, planes, and conics in 3D spaceEdit

  • 3D lines: Two points X, Y forms a line.
Plucker matrix is defined as U(4x4) = X Y' - Y X'. From U, the line is defined as L := [ U(4,1) U(4,2) U(4,3) U(2,3) U(3,1) U(1,2) ]'.
The line L consists of [ direction vector U1 | normal vector U2 ] parts. U1 represents the vector Y - X. U2 represents the cross product of X and Y. Clearly, dot(U1,U2) = 0.
  • Intersection between two lines gives a point. If two lines L, M meet, dot(L,M) = 0.
  • Intersection between two planes makes a line.
  • A line L passing through a plane K makes a point.
  • ...


Rigid motionEdit

Euler angles, axis-angle, Chasles theorem
On the representation of rigid body transformations for accurate registration of free-form shapes
  • Coordinate transformation in 3D
  • Alignment (See: ICP)

Projective Transformations in 3DEdit

TP: Projective transformation (15dof) of 3-space, TP = [TA t; v' s]
TA: Affine transformation (12dof) of 3-space, TP = [TA t; 0' 1]
TS: Similarity transformation (7dof) of 3-space, TP = [s*R t; 0' 1]
TE: Euclidean transformation (6dof) of 3-space, TP = [R t; 0' 1]

Uncertainty and geometric constraintEdit

Uncertainty of geometric entityEdit

  • Uncertainty of a point?
  • Uncertainty of a line?
  • Uncertainty of a direction?
  • Uncertainty of a plane?

An example: triangleEdit

3 angles of triangle

Imagine that you are measuring three angles of a triangle with a protractor. From the first trial, you got values [30.5, 60.0, 90.1] degrees. Which are not perfect because the summation of them is not equal to 180! So, you have decided to measure angles 10 times and average them. However, still you are not sure that the sum of the averages will be 180.

Figure XXX shows the relations between three angles in a triangle.

1) Define a manifold M (e.g. Figure XXX)
2) Measure a set of values p = [a(i), b(i), c(i)] for N times
3) Compute the mean m and the covariance matrix S
4) Project p and S onto the manifold M: q, H
  angles <-- q
  variance <-- f(H)

Averaging multiple observationsEdit

When you observed multiple rigid transformations for the extrinsic calibration of N sensors, you can use "Dual Quaternions" for to compute an "average" rigid transformation.

The Algorithm
* input: {R(i), t(i)} % a set of R, t
* output: R*, t*      % optimal R, t
* convert all R(i), t(i) to DQ(i) % Dual Quaternions
* find the mean DQ* from {DQ(i)}
* convert DQ* to R*, t*
Dual QuaternionsEdit

"Similar to the way that rotations in 3D space can be represented by quaternions of unit length, rigid motions in 3D space can be represented by dual quaternions of unit length. This fact is used in theoretical kinematics, and in applications to 3D computer graphics, robotics and computer vision." Wiki

L. Kavan, S. Collins, C. O'Sullivan, J. Zara (2006) Dual Quaternions for Rigid Transformation Blending, Technical report, Trinity College Dublin.
Matlab toolbox with a nice document
Working on the manifoldEdit

http://stat.fsu.edu/~anuj/CVPR_Tutorial/ShortCourse.htm Differential Geometric Methods for Shape Analysis and Activity Recognition

Registration of multiple viewsEdit

Point Cloud OnlyEdit

Point registration problem (1) finds point-to-point correspondences and (2) estimates the transformation between them. Previous methods can be divided into three categories: the ICP (Iterative Closest Point), soft assignment methods, and probabilistic methods.

ICP can be trapped in local minima and sensitive to initialization and the threshold to accept a match. Hence, the nearest point strategy is replaced by soft assignments within a continuous optimization framework. But, the convergence property is not guaranteed in the presence of outliers. The point-to-point assignment problem can be cast into estimation of parameters of a (Gaussian) mixture. --> EM-ICP

  • Tensor
  • Initialization

Source codesEdit

RGB 2D features + depth valuesEdit

Since we have both RGB and depth map, registration of two views can be done by simple 3D feature matching. Given two sets of corresponding 3D feature descriptors, X = [x1, x2, ..., xn] and Y = [y1, y2, ..., yn], the rigid motion between X and Y, Y = T X, is computed directly. A robust estimation method such as RANSAC provide accurate results in the presence of outliers.

Pseudo code: computing the rigid motion
* input: X, Y
* output: R, t

Solution = [];
For i=1:N
  randomly select 5 corresponding points from X, Y: s1 = {X(j), X(k), X(l)} and s2 = {Y(j), Y(k), Y(l)}
  estimate T' = (R', t') using s1, s2
  compute Y^ = T' X
  store the number of inliers, m(i), to Solution: S(i) = (R'(i), t'(i), m(i))
Answer = arg max(i) (S(i).m(i))

2D, 2.5D and 3D featuresEdit

Curvature estimation: HK SegmentationEdit

  • See HK Segmentation
  • Curvature estimation in the presence of noise depth map

2.5D FeaturesEdit

  • Using 2D image features on a depth map

We could use 2D image features (e.g., SIFT, ORB, SURF, LBP) on a 2.5D depth map. One of key differences is on the scale of images. Since we know absolute scale in a range map, search space can be restricted to detect only physically meaningful features.

3D FeaturesEdit

  • maxima, spin images


  • Tracking features using LKT in depth video?

How to get accurate registration?Edit

  • Depth sensor(s) should be calibrated.
  • We model the uncertainties of the locations of 2D features and depth values.
  • If we have a known camera matrix K, minimizing the re-projection error in image space provides an accurate estimate.
  • SIM (Surface Interpenetration Measure) [Queirolo 2010]
  • RGB values and depth information can be fused.

Multiple Sensor SystemsEdit



  • Face detection
  • Face recognition (OpenNI2 middleware) [1]
  • Face modeling (OpenNI2 application) [2]
  • Facial feature detection: eyes, nose tip, mouth, ears
  • 3D face pose tracking
  • microsoft-released-face-tracking-sdk-kinect-windows [3]



Related topicsEdit

Mesh representationEdit

  • From 2.5D
  • From 3D

Recognition of 3D objectsEdit

feature matching methods in [Object Recognition by M. Bennamoun and G.J. Mamic]

1. Hyphothesis and test

2. Matching Relational Structures

3. Pose Clustering

4. Geometric Hashing

5. Interpretation Tree

6. Registration and Distance Transforms

Indexing for recognitionEdit

  • geometric hashing

Parametric model fittingEdit


Linear AlgebraEdit

vector & matrix manipulation, pseudo inverse, rank, eigen value decomposition, svd, Least Mean Squared, Homogeneous Systems


gradient decent method, newton method, Levenberg-Marquardt (http://www.ics.forth.gr/~lourakis/levmar/), simplex

probability and statisticsEdit

covariance matrix, Bayesian probability


  • Kalman Filtering, EKF
  • Particle Filtering

computational geometryEdit

Surface Tangent, Normal, Area, Triangle mesh, Voronoi diagram, Surface Curvatures, Normal and principal curvatures

Installation: Primesense, Kinect, and Asus cameras and librariesEdit

  • OpenNI and Prime Sensor

http://www.openni.org/Downloads/OpenNIModules.aspx, choose the right version regarding your OS.

Try this: http://structure.io/openni

You need:

  1. OpenNI Binaries
  2. OpenNI Compliant Hardware Binaries for Prime Sensor Module Stable Build

After downloading and installing the binaries, you can now use the libraries of OpenNI together with OpenCV to write fantastic Codes

  • Configuration in your working environment (Visual Studio)

In the "Properties" of your project, you need to add:

  1. DIRECTORY_OF_OPENNI\Include to your "additional include directories"
  2. DIRECTORY_OF_OPENNI\Lib to your "additional library directories"
  3. In the Linker section, under the Input node, select Additional Dependencies and add OpenNI2.lib.(should be in the DIRECTORY_OF_OPENNI\Lib\OpenNI2.lib)
  4. Ensure that you add the Additional Include and Library directories to both your Release and Debug configurations. Choose win32 or x64 according to the version of your OpenNI2.
  5. Your code files should include OpenNI.h

For your reference, check http://www.openni.org/openni-programmers-guide/

Simple OpenniEdit


How to read a single 3D point from a depth sensor? (OpenNI 2)Edit

After you installed the OpenNI2 successfully, you should be able to run the sample programs in DIRECTORY_OF_OPENNI\Samples/Bin.

The following is the key code to get the depth information of a single point( For the initialization, you can refer to the "SimpleViewer" sample code):

openni::VideoFrameRef depthFrame;
const openni::DepthPixel* pDepth = (const openni::DepthPixel*) depthFrame.getData;
int width = depthFrame.getWidth();
int height = depthFrame.getHeight();
for (int i = 0; i < height; ++i)
    for (int j = 0; j < width; ++j, ++pDepth)
    if(i == height/2 && j == width/2 && *pDepth != 0 )//The if sentence depends on which point you want, this is the center point for example
    {} //assign the value to a 3D point structure

Display the depthMap from openNI input in the openCV image (C++) (OpenNI 1)Edit

/* Display depth map */
// Matthias Hernandez: 07/27/2011 - University of Southern California
// m31hernandez@gmail.com
// display the depthMap from openNI input in the openCV image ‘out’
void displayDepthMap(IplImage *out, const XnDepthPixel* pDepthMap, XnDepthPixel max_depth, XnDepthPixel min_depth) {
    uchar *data = (uchar *)out->imageData;
    int step = out->widthStep;
    int channels = out->nChannels;
    float normalize = (float)(max_depth-min_depth)/255.0f;

    int index=0;
    for (int i=0; i<MAX_I; i++) {
   	 if (pDepthMap[i] < min_depth || pDepthMap[i] > max_depth) {
   		 for (int k=0; k<channels; k++)
   			 data[index++] = 0;
   	 } else {
   		 if (normalize != 0) {
   			 for (int k=0; k<channels; k++)
   				 data[index++] = (int)(255-(float)(pDepthMap[i]-min_depth)/normalize);
   			 for (int k=0; k<channels; k++)
   				 data[index++] = 255;

Display the RGB image from openNI input (C) (OpenNI 1)Edit

/* Display image map */
// Matthias Hernandez: 07/27/2011 - University of Southern California
// m31hernandez@gmail.com
// display the image map from openNI input in the openCV image ‘out’
void displayImageMap(IplImage *out, const XnUInt8* pImageMap) {
    uchar *data = (uchar *)out->imageData;
    int step = out->widthStep;
    int channels = out->nChannels;    

    for (int i=0; i<MAX3_HR; i+=3) {
   	 data[i+2]    = pImageMap[i];
   	 data[i+1]    = pImageMap[i+1];
   	 data[i]   	 = pImageMap[i+2];

the conversion from projective to real world (C) (OpenNI 2)Edit

#define XtoZ 1.114880018171494f
#define YtoZ 0.836160013628620f
#define MIN_DEPTH 450
#define MAX_DEPTH 800

void convertP2RW(float *pDepth, float *pReal, int x, int y, int w, int h) {
        int max_i = w * h;

	int i1 = (y * w + x),
		i2 = i1 + max_i,
		i3 = i2 + max_i;

	float Z = pDepth[i1];

    if (Z > MIN_DEPTH && Z < MAX_DEPTH){
        float X_rw = ( (float)x /(float)w -0.5f)*Z*XtoZ;
        float Y_rw = (0.5f-(float)y / (float)h)*Z*YtoZ;

		pReal[i1] = X_rw;
		pReal[i2] = Y_rw;
		pReal[i3] = Z;
	} else {
		pReal[i1] = 0.0f;
		pReal[i2] = 0.0f;
		pReal[i3] = 0.0f;

// Of Course, the inverse function is 

void convertRW2P(float *pReal, float *pDepth,int x, int y, int w, int h) {
	 int max_i = w * h;

	int i1 = (y * w + x),
	i2 = i1 + max_i,
	i3 = i2 + max_i;

	float xR = pReal[i1];
	float yR = pReal[i2];
	float zR = pReal[i3];

	int ixi = (xR/zR/XtoZ + 0.5f)*(float)w + 0.5f;  // x
	int iyi = (-yR/zR/YtoZ + 0.5f)*(float)h + 0.5f; // y

	pDepth[i1] = zR;

The idea of calibration (using the image of the absolute conic)Edit

  x = P (H inv(H)) X
  H: a projective transformation

The plane at infinity and the absolute conic

PAI: fixed under H

AC: fixed under H

ADQ: fixed under H (a single equation)

 Q = H Q H’
 PAI is the null-vector of ADQ (Q a = 0)

DIAC (the dual image of the absolute conic) = the image of ADQ (cf. IAC (the image of the absolute conic))

W* = K K’ (K: the calibration matrix) by Cholesky fac.

How to read IR stream from a depth cameraEdit



Depth sensorsEdit

PrimeSense www.primesense.com

Kinect - Xbox.com www.xbox.com/KINECT

Xtion PRO LIVE http://www.asus.com/Multimedia/Motion_Sensor/Xtion_PRO_LIVE/

softkinetic http://www.softkinetic.com/

velodynelidar.com http://velodynelidar.com/lidar/lidar.aspx

Introducing the Leap http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_d6KuiuteIA

Mesa Imaging http://mesa-imaging.ch/


http://www.danielgm.net/cc/ CloudCompare - 3D point cloud and mesh processing software

http://www.cs.unc.edu/~isenburg/lastools/ LAStools: award-winning software for rapid converting, filtering, viewing, gridding, and compressing of LiDAR


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