Unsupervised Learning of Human Motion Models

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 14 (NIPS 2001)

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Yang Song, Luis Goncalves, Pietro Perona


This paper presents an unsupervised learning algorithm that can derive the probabilistic dependence structure of parts of an object (a moving hu- man body in our examples) automatically from unlabeled data. The dis- tinguished part of this work is that it is based on unlabeled data, i.e., the training features include both useful foreground parts and background clutter and the correspondence between the parts and detected features are unknown. We use decomposable triangulated graphs to depict the probabilistic independence of parts, but the unsupervised technique is not limited to this type of graph. In the new approach, labeling of the data (part assignments) is taken as hidden variables and the EM algo- rithm is applied. A greedy algorithm is developed to select parts and to search for the optimal structure based on the differential entropy of these variables. The success of our algorithm is demonstrated by applying it to generate models of human motion automatically from unlabeled real image sequences.