John R. Smith and Shih-Fu Chang
Department of Electrical Engineering and
New York, N.Y. 10027 USA
Note: This paper was published in: John R.Smith, Shih-Fu Chang. "VisualSEEk: a Fully Automated Content-Based Image Query System". In ACM Multimedia, Boston, MA, November 1996." [pdf]
We describe a highly functional prototype system for searching by visual features in an image database. The VisualSEEk system is novel in that the user forms the queries by diagramming spatial arrangements of color regions. The system finds the images that contain the most similar arrangements of similar regions. Prior to the queries, the system automatically extracts and indexes salient color regions from the images. By utilizing efficient indexing techniques for color information, region sizes and absolute and relative spatial locations, a wide variety of complex joint color/spatial queries may be computed.