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Journal Article

A Parallel Algorithm for Real-Time Computation of Motion


Bülthoff,  HH
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Bülthoff, H., Little, J., & Poggio, T. (1989). A Parallel Algorithm for Real-Time Computation of Motion. Nature, 337(6207), 549-553. doi:10.1038/337549a0.

Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0013-EF0D-6
The precise measurement of the two-dimensional field of velocities from time-varying two-dimensional images is impossible in general. It is, however, possible to compute suitable 'optical flows' that are qualitatively similar to the velocity field in most cases. We describe a simple, parallel algorithm that computes an optical flow from sequences of real images, which is consistent with human psychophysics and suggests plausible physiological models. In particular, our algorithm runs on a Connection Machine supercomputer in close-to-real time. It shows several of the same "illusions9 that are perceived by humans. A natural physiological implementation of the model is consistent with data from cortical areas V1 and MT.