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Enhancing Video Surveillance

Enhancing Video Surveillance

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Published by pkbagorio1
http://aboutipcamera.com/
ip camera, security cameras, cctv cameras, ip surveillance video reviews and information

http://aboutipcamera.com/
ip camera, security cameras, cctv cameras, ip surveillance video reviews and information

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Published by: pkbagorio1 on Jan 10, 2012
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05/20/2013

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 ==== ====ip camera, security cameras, cctv cameras, ip video surveillance reviews and information Click onthe link Belowhttp://aboutipcamera.com/  ==== ====-- What are the key functions of Video Surveillance? -- We shall take an end user perspective here. The key functions are monitoring in real time, reviewand retrieval of footages which provide important information about certain predefined events.Footages refer to images captured by cameras and recorded in the computer or server of thevideo surveillance system. In brief, there are two approaches for footage recording; they are timescheduled or motion detection based respectively. -- Time Scheduled Recording -- Recording everything the camera captures at all times is the simplest way and the oldest way offootage recording. The next advance is to allow the end user to be selective. For example, she isinterested in night time only and she can set recording to start from 6pm to 6am for 5 weekdaysper week. The recording does not differentiate if and when motions exist. -- What is Motion Detection? -- Motion Detection can be understood better if we start with no motion. No motion means all thingsthat are visible to the camera do not move. This implies that something that is not visible maymove. Examples are movements of people behind a concrete wall or outside the scope ofsurveillance. "No motion" in this paper does not preclude motions that are not visible to cameralenses. Motion detection is largely a human sensory perception. Camera lenses are in the category ofsignal acquisition sensors and they are not perception builders. We use cameras to obtain asequence of images, and use computer chips to compare the images or counts of black dots forexample on two sequential frames to identify changes of dots. The camera or computer can tellhow many dots have changed and decide when to qualify a motion. -- Why Motion Detection Recording is Desirable -- For the last 20 years of video surveillance history when images were recorded on tapes, we had togo through every inch of the tape to find the footage of interest such as an incidence of robbery orborder intrusion. If we have 5 days of footage to search, we would need 5 days to search thefootage. Even with 2 times fast forwarding, we still need 2.5 days. We cannot fast forward the tapemore because details would be lost in fast forwarding and the needed footage would not beidentifiable. We should not fast forward the tape at all if the event took place in a short interval oftime or the motion was quite small.
 
 Motion detection based recording is desirable so that we can skip the periods of no motion withcertainty and we can focus on footages with motion only. Assume that the level of activity of thelocation is quite low such as 1.2 hours of motion out of 24 hours only. We can skip 95% of the tapeand screen 5% only for a reduction of 95% of our screening time. We can screen 5 days offootage in 6 hours in normal playback speed, or 1 day of footage in 1.2 hours. This is certainlymore manageable. In many cases we can narrow down the range of time an incidence took place. For example, wefound our front door lock was broken when we came home from work and we knew the incidencetook place between 8am and 6pm today. Normally there would not be any motion around the frontdoor during the period and there would not be any camera recording. We would easily locate thefootage that recorded all motions that took place around the front door on the day. Based on the same rationale, the time to locate important footages would still be very short even ifwe do not know which path the vandal took to break into the house. The condition is that thehouse is covered by cameras placed at all tactical locations. -- Period of Footage -- When the site under video surveillance is large and has 30 cameras operating for instance, we talkabout a lot of footage for storage or archiving. The footages with no motion are useless. If we areable to save footage with motions only, we will reduce the storage requirement by a big factorsuch as 20 as in the above example. If our storage was enough to store 1 day previously without amotion detection algorithm, the same storage would be good for 20 days by implementing motiondetection. This reduction of storage requirement or extension of footage storage period constitutesthe second major desire for motion detection. -- How to Enhance the Effectiveness of Motion Detection? -- Let us introduce a criterion called the level of sensitivity. This refers to how many dot changes arerequired to qualify a motion detected. Suppose there are 1000 dots in the frame. We can say achange of 1 dot or more qualifies as motion. This is a very sensitive level as any minute changewould be recorded. Do we want to record images when the leaves of a tree in the backgroundmove in a breeze? Do we want to record images when the clouds in the sky create a dark shadeon the scene? We do not want to because those footages would delay our process of searchingand use up valuable storage estates. To filter off the above effects that do not pertain to the subject matter of surveillance, we may setthe sensitivity to a minimum of 100 dot changes out of a frame with 1000 dots. We will need to doreal life testing to find the sweet spot of sensitivity as most situations are different. -- Focal Point of Interest -- In many situations, we set the camera lens to focus at a particular area and place the area at thecentre of the frame so that the surrounding scenery helps to provide a description of the area. Thismeans that the periphery of the frame is important for scenery description and not important if anymotion takes place there. Footages recording motion in the periphery of the frame would be
 
useless and would delay the process of searching - we do not want them. To filter off the above effects, we can set the scope of recording area to be smaller than the frame. Modern video surveillance systems allow end user definition of multiple recording areas within aframe and each with its own sensitivity level. Under this arrangement, a recording area would befocused as far as the subject matter of surveillance is concerned. We would want a high sensitivityas a motion detection criterion but we still have to consider filtering off changes of illuminationeffects. -- Motion as an Event -- Some modern video surveillance systems have a higher level of artificial intelligence than thedefinition of motion detection described above. They have event handling capabilities. When anevent takes place, the system responds with some pre-defined actions. Let us define a detectedmotion as an event and define the change of recording resolution as the response action. Let usalso set the system to be on time scheduled recording. Within the scheduled period, the systemwould be recording footage at a low resolution irrespectively. The recording would include leavesmoving in a breeze and cloud shades moving in and out.When a motion of interest takes place, the system will switch recording to a high resolution mode.When the motion stops, recording will go back to low resolution. Is that ideal? -- Do Not Take Motion Detection For Granted -- The guidelines for setting up a video surveillance system are: focus on image quality, fine tune thecriteria for motion detection, assure the effectiveness of motion detection recording, enhance theprocess of searching and retrieval, and lastly extend the period of footages. -- END -- TN Chan is the system architect of Compucon New Zealand http://www.compucon.co.nz andComputers New Zaland http://www.cnz.co.nz. He is a Chartered Engineer and has 17 years ofpower station engineering experience and 18 years of computer system hardware and videosurveillance experience. His current roles are business management, knowledge transfer,technology appraisal, quality assurance and IPVS project management. He can be reached attn@compucon.co.nz.  Article Source:http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=TN_Chan 

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