Why some algorithms *seem* to work

It is interesting to read about new algorithms in image processing. As mentioned in the previous post, there are a multitude of contrast enhancement algorithms out there. Go on… read one or to of the papers associated with the algorithms. Then *try* to reproduce the algorithm. In some cases it will be easy. In others? Well, let’s just say that with the information given, the algorithm cannot be reproduced. Worse still? The author has taken the liberty of testing the algorithm on images which show dramatic results, or has failed to compare the results against a simple algorithm. Here’s one of the images used to test the algorithm:


Fish image

Pretty blah right? Thats because the histogram is skewed completely to the left.


Histogram of fish

Now many of the algorithms the authors use to compare their algorithm against fail on this image.  Not surprising… it has one peak. Histogram equalization? It works quite nicely.


The published algorithm also works quite well… but then again, so does stretching the histogram.


This is one of the reasons it’s hard to get excited about the field of image processing sometimes. It has become overwhelmed with lack-luster algorithms.


One thought on “Why some algorithms *seem* to work

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