Template matching

Publicat: 20 Ian 2012 00:00

Abstract. Template matching is a technique for finding small parts of an image which match a template image. It slids the template from the top left to the bottom right of the image, and compare for the best match with template. The template dimension should be equal or smaller than the reference image. In this paper we will discuss about how to perform a fast template matching using OpenCV.



1. Introduction
Computer vision is the science and technology of machines that see, where see in this case means that the machine is able to extract information from an image that is necessary to solve some task. As a scientific discipline, computer vision is concerned with the theory behind artificial systems that extract information from images. The image data can take many forms, such as video sequences, views from multiple cameras, or multi-dimensional data from a medical scanner.

As a technological discipline, computer vision seeks to apply its theories and models to the construction of computer vision systems. Examples of applications of computer vision include systems for:
- Controlling processes (e.g., an industrial robot or an autonomous vehicle).
- Detecting events (e.g., for visual surveillance or people counting).
- Organizing information (e.g., for indexing databases of images and image sequences).
- Modeling objects or environments (e.g., industrial inspection, medical image analy-
sis or topographical modeling).
- Interaction (e.g., as the input to a device for computer-human interaction).

Computer vision is closely related to the study of biological vision. The field of biological vision studies and models the physiological processes behind visual perception in humans and other animals. Computer vision, on the other hand, studies and describes the processes implemented in software and hardware behind artificial vision systems. Interdisciplinary exchange between biological and computer vision has proven fruitful for both fields.

Computer vision is, in some ways, the inverse of computer graphics. While computer graphics produces image data from 3D models, computer vision often produces 3D models from image data. There is also a trend towards a combination of the two disciplines, e.g., as explored in augmented reality.

Sub-domains of computer vision include scene reconstruction, event detection, video tracking, object recognition, learning, indexing, motion estimation, and image restoration. Template matching can be subdivided between two approaches: feature-based and template-based matching.

The feature-based approach uses the features of the search and template image, such as edges or corners, as the primary match-measuring metrics to find the best matching location of the template in the source image. The template-based, or global, approach, uses the entire template, with generally a sum-comparing metric (using SAD, SSD, cross-correlation, etc.) that determines the best location by testing all or a sample of the viable test locations within the search image that the template image may match up to.

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