Product: Autodesk Lustre 2008
The separation of objects in moving images is an essential problem in digital post production. During digital color grading for instance colorists have to isolate actors or objects from their background all the time in order to apply some effect only on them. In case of a solid color background - like a green/bluescreen shot - color keying is the technique to use. However, regular shots have usually some arbitrary background, making it impossible to use the keyer. In such cases the colorist - or his/her assistant - has to draw a shape around the object and adjust it frame-by-frame so it stays on the target all the time. This is always a very time consuming thing to do, especially in case of multiple objects and 1000 frame shots...
During the development of the 3D tracker I have implemented a number of algorithms (automatic detection, tracking and filtering of multiple feature points) that seemed to be a good base for developing an "automagical" object tracker. With the help of my Montreal colleague Jean-Francois Duchesneau we introduced the new Region Tracker in Lustre 2008.
The main idea is to automatically detect a number of feature points (a "cloud" of points) and track them over a number of frames. Using the motion data of all these points (could be multiple hundred!) the motion of the object can be robustly estimated. This means that minor problems - such as partial occlusion - do not interfere with the analysis. Even though we still have to solve a number of issues the feedback is really positive from costumers!
Everyone should buy Lustre just for this
says Brett. ...