A Comparison of Search Strategies for Geometric Branch and Bound Algorithms

  • Thomas M. Breuel
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 2352)


Over the last decade, a number of methods for geometric matching based on a branch-and-bound approach have been proposed. Such algorithms work by recursively subdividing transformation space and bounding the quality of match over each subdivision. No direct comparison of the major implementation strategies has been made so far, so it has been unclear what the relative performance of the different approaches is. This paper examines experimentally the relative performance of different implementation choices in the implementation of branch-and-bound algorithms for geometric matching: alternatives for the computation of upper bounds across a collection of features, and alternatives the order in which search nodes are expanded. Two major approaches to computing the bounds have been proposed: the matchlist based approach, and approaches based on point location data structures. A second issue that is addressed in the paper is the question of search strategy; branch-and-bound algorithms traditionally use a “best-first” search strategy, but a “depth-first” strategy is a plausible alternative. These alternative implementations are compared on an easily reproducible and commonly used class of test problems, a statistical model of feature distributions and matching within the COIL-20 image database. The experimental results show that matchlist based approaches outperform point location based approaches on common tasks. The paper also shows that a depth-first approach to matching results in a 50-200 fold reduction in memory usage with only a small increase in running time. Since matchlist-based approaches are significantly easier to implement and can easily cope with a much wider variety of feature types and error bounds that point location based approaches, they should probably the primary implementation strategy for branch-and-bound based methods for geometric matching.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thomas M. Breuel
    • 1
  1. 1.Xerox Palo Alto Research CenterPalo Alto

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