Woven Planet North America, Inc. (Los Altos, CA)
It is common to offer overhead view maps. There are a variety of ways to provide maps with an overhead view. These include cartography techniques like street atlases maps as well as aerialphotography. These traditional methods can be used to view the earth from the sky. They are also used for geographical studies including mapping of areas. Traditional methods offer digital images with not enough resolution to allow crucial mapping information like map semantics or maps characteristics to be extracted. Thus, in some instances, the semantics of traditional cartography maps can be combined with the real views provided by digital imagesanticipated to create maps with a realistic appearance that provide more than an image of the region mapped by a satellite or aerial view.
Aerial photos are typically created using manual photography. They don’t offer orthographic or overhead views. They provide a perspective and elevated views similar to that of a bird’s eye. This is why they are called “bird’s-eye view”. Toprovide an overhead view of the mapped area, satellite imagery has consequently been more frequently used for mapping, environmental monitoring and archaeological surveys. However, these images have to be taken using expensive satellites that continuously orbit the earth. Satellite images can be distorted geometrically because of the lens’s properties and unavoidable movement of the satellites, or because of environmental influences. These can result in inaccurate images of the real-world which oftenhinders their use for mapping purposes. Satellite images can also be obtained directly from imaging devices (as flat 2-D images) in a substantial distance above ground level. This means that satellite images typically contain obstructions like bridges or trees that interfere with the view of the ground over the ground. There are a variety of environmental variables that may affect the image quality, which may hinder its use in mapping applications.
It can be difficult to accurately and efficiently produce realistic and content-rich overhead view maps when combining satellite or aerial images with cartographic maps because they do not always be in alignment. The maps created do not reflect the real-world ground elevation and therefore do not work for all applications.
One aspect and/or all embodiments provide a method for creating a context-rich overhead picture of a geographical region using groundmap data and image data collected at a substantially ground level.
According to a first aspect, there is provided a method comprising: selecting one or more images of an overhead image generated of a geographical area, wherein the generated overhead view is derived from the aggregated pixel values derived from the correlated pixel values in each of the images of the geographical area and identifying one or more semantic map features that are present in the one or more photos of the overhead view of the geographical area; extracting the one or moresemantic map features of the geographical area from one or more images from the significantly overhead view of the geographic region; and converting the features of the semantic map that were extracted into the semantic map layer of an asymmetrical map of the geographical region.
In accordance with a different aspect, there is provided a system comprising: at least one processor, and a memory storing instructions that are executed by at least one processor, cause the system to execute an operation such as determining one ormore images of a generated overhead view of the geographical area, wherein the overhead view generated is generated from aggregated pixels determined from correlated pixel values in plurality of photographs of the geographical area; identifying one ormore semantic map features as being found in the one or more photos of the overhead perspective of the geographic area; extracting the one or more semantic map features of the geographical area from one or more photos of the significantly overhead perspective of the geographic area and translating the semantic map features extracted into the semantic map layer of the geometric map of the geographical area.
Another aspect is computer-readable media that is non-transitory and contains instructions that can be executed by computers. These instructions are capable of performing the following tasks: determining one to three pictures of an area’s overhead view; extracting one or several semantic map elements from the images taken from the very overhead perspective; and converting the semantic map layers into the geospatial map layer.
It should be appreciated that a variety of other features such as applications, embodiments and variants of the disclosed technology will become obvious from the accompanying drawings and from the following detailed description. Additional and alternativeimplementations of the structures, systems, non-transitory computer readable media, and methods described herein can be employed without departing from the principles of the disclosed technology.Click here to view the patent on USPTO website.
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