Machine vision can create Harry Potter–style photos for muggles

This is the problem of body pose estimation..Given a two-dimensional image of a human, the question that machine vision struggles to answer is: what three-dimensional pose is the person taking?.That’s difficult because bodies can be partially occluded, often by other body parts, as when someone stands with arms folded..That makes it hard for a machine to determine the three-dimensional structure from a 2D image..A wide range of computer science teams have attempted to tackle this problem..In this work, Weng and co use a program called SMPL, developed by a team at Microsoft and the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems in Germany..This begins with a 2D cutout of a human body and superimposes a 3D skeleton onto the shape..The skeleton can then be animated to create the sense of movement..That solves the problem of pose estimation, albeit for a limited set of circumstances..The code needs to see a head-to-toe cutout of a body seem from the front..It can handle some types of occlusion, such as an arm in front of the body, but cannot handle more complex occlusions, such as somebody sitting with legs crossed..Even still, mapping the cutout from a photograph onto a 3D skeleton does not produce realistic animations.. More details

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