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photo: Charless Fowlkes

Associate Professor of Computer Science Charless Fowlkes has been awarded The Helmholtz Prize by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) for his paper “A database of human segmented natural images and its application to evaluating segmentation algorithms and measuring ecological statistics,” co-authored with then-UC Berkeley researchers David Martin, Doron Tal and Jitendra Malik in 2001.

The paper “presents a database containing ‘ground truth’ segmentations produced by humans for images of a wide variety of natural scenes,” evaluating the performance of segmentation algorithms and measuring probability distributions associated with Gestalt grouping factors as well as statistics of image region properties.

The Helmholtz Prize recognizes International Conference on Computer Vision (ICCV) papers from 10 or more years ago that have withstood the test of time, making significant impact and fundamental contributions to computer vision research. The biannual award is named for the 19th-century physician and physicist Hermann von Helmholtz. Winners are determined by the Technical Committee on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence (TCPAMI) Awards Committee.

According to its website, “ICCV is the premier international Computer Vision event comprising the main ICCV conference and several co-located workshops and short courses. With its high quality and low cost, it provides an exceptional value for students, academics and industry researchers.” An IEEE conference, ICCV 2015 was held December in Santiago, Chile.