Thursday, October 4, 2012

Practical Computer Vision with SimpleCV

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In the computer world, things are ever changing and guidebooks are the key to getting you off on the right foot. For those of you interested in getting started with computer vision programming, Practical Computer Vision with SimpleCV: Making Computers See in Python (O'Reilly, 2012) by Kurt Demaagd, Anthony Oliver, Nathan Ooostendorp & Katherine Scott could be the book for you!

Here is the synopsis of Practical Computer Vision with SimpleCV taken from the back of book:

Learn how to build your own computer vision (CV) applications quickly and easily with SimpleCV, an open source framework written in Python. Through examples of real-world applications, this hands on guide introduces you to basic CV techniques for collecting, processing, and analyzing digital images (streaming or still).  You'll then learn how to apply these methods with SimpleCV, using sample Python code. All you need to get started is a Windows, Mac, or Linux system, and a willingness to put CV to work in a variety of ways. Programming experience is optional. 

*Capture images from several sources, including webcams, smartphones, and the Kinect
*Filter image data to save processing power and time*Manipulate images with methods such as scaling, cropping, warping or morphing--as well as basic image arithmetic*Use feature detection techniques to focus on the interesting parts of an image
*Work with a group of Features in a FeatureSet using a variety of defined functions*Learn about optical flow and how to identify objects that change between two image frames*Use the SimpleCV shell to easily develop code and test techniques

Practical Computer Vision with SimpleCV is definitely a beginners guide to using SimpleCV. I found that it taught hands on application with limited theory. It walks you though just how to set up a basic CV program in an easy to read and understand fashion. However, I wish that the book had been printed in color, they reference colors a lot and the book is printed in gray scale, plus there is an are in the book where they are trying to show how various changed to the program change the look of the same image--it is very hard to detect that there is any change at all--I think color photos may have helped to emphasize their point. That begin said. The book is a great starting point for new CV programmers.

Thank you to Oreilly for my sample used in this review, opinions are honest.  Review by Michelle.

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