Browsing Department of Mathematical Sciences by browse.metadata.advisor "Coetzer, Johannes"
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- ItemOff-line signature verification using classifier ensembles and flexible grid features(Stellenbosch : University of Stellenbosch, 2009-12) Swanepoel, Jacques Philip; Coetzer, Johannes; University of Stellenbosch. Faculty of Science. Dept. of Mathematical Sciences.ENGLISH ABSTRACT: In this study we investigate the feasibility of combining an ensemble of eight continuous base classifiers for the purpose of off-line signature verification. This work is mainly inspired by the process of cheque authentication within the banking environment. Each base classifier is constructed by utilising a specific local feature, in conjunction with a specific writer-dependent signature modelling technique. The local features considered are pixel density, gravity centre distance, orientation and predominant slant. The modelling techniques considered are dynamic time warping and discrete observation hidden Markov models. In this work we focus on the detection of high quality (skilled) forgeries. Feature extraction is achieved by superimposing a grid with predefined resolution onto a signature image, whereafter a single local feature is extracted from each signature sub-image corresponding to a specific grid cell. After encoding the signature image into a matrix of local features, each column within said matrix represents a feature vector (observation) within a feature set (observation sequence). In this work we propose a novel flexible grid-based feature extraction technique and show that it outperforms existing rigid grid-based techniques. The performance of each continuous classifier is depicted by a receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve, where each point in ROC-space represents the true positive rate and false positive rate of a threshold-specific discrete classifier. The objective is therefore to develope a combined classifier for which the area-under-curve (AUC) is maximised -or for which the equal error rate (EER) is minimised. Two disjoint data sets, in conjunction with a cross-validation protocol, are used for model optimisation and model evaluation. This protocol avoids possible model overfitting, and also scrutinises the generalisation potential of each classifier. During the first optimisation stage, the grid configuration which maximises proficiency is determined for each base classifier. During the second optimisation stage, the most proficient ensemble of optimised base classifiers is determined for several classifier fusion strategies. During both optimisation stages only the optimisation data set is utilised. During evaluation, each optimal classifier ensemble is combined using a specific fusion strategy, and retrained and tested on the separate evaluation data set. We show that the performance of the optimal combined classifiers is significantly better than that of the optimal individual base classifiers. Both score-based and decision-based fusion strategies are investigated, which includes a novel extension to an existing decision-based fusion strategy. The existing strategy is based on ROC-statistics of the base classifiers and maximum likelihood estimation. We show that the proposed elitist maximum attainable ROC-based strategy outperforms the existing one.
- ItemOff-line signature verification using ensembles of local Radon transform-based HMMs(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2011-03) Panton, Mark Stuart; Coetzer, Johannes; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Science. Dept. of Mathematical Sciences.ENGLISH ABSTRACT: An off-line signature verification system attempts to authenticate the identity of an individual by examining his/her handwritten signature, after it has been successfully extracted from, for example, a cheque, a debit or credit card transaction slip, or any other legal document. The questioned signature is typically compared to a model trained from known positive samples, after which the system attempts to label said signature as genuine or fraudulent. Classifier fusion is the process of combining individual classifiers, in order to construct a single classifier that is more accurate, albeit computationally more complex, than its constituent parts. A combined classifier therefore consists of an ensemble of base classifiers that are combined using a specific fusion strategy. In this dissertation a novel off-line signature verification system, using a multi-hypothesis approach and classifier fusion, is proposed. Each base classifier is constructed from a hidden Markov model (HMM) that is trained from features extracted from local regions of the signature (local features), as well as from the signature as a whole (global features). To achieve this, each signature is zoned into a number of overlapping circular retinas, from which said features are extracted by implementing the discrete Radon transform. A global retina, that encompasses the entire signature, is also considered. Since the proposed system attempts to detect high-quality (skilled) forgeries, it is unreasonable to assume that samples of these forgeries will be available for each new writer (client) enrolled into the system. The system is therefore constrained in the sense that only positive training samples, obtained from each writer during enrolment, are available. It is however reasonable to assume that both positive and negative samples are available for a representative subset of so-called guinea-pig writers (for example, bank employees). These signatures constitute a convenient optimisation set that is used to select the most proficient ensemble. A signature, that is claimed to belong to a legitimate client (member of the general public), is therefore rejected or accepted based on the majority vote decision of the base classifiers within the most proficient ensemble. When evaluated on a data set containing high-quality imitations, the inclusion of local features, together with classifier combination, significantly increases system performance. An equal error rate of 8.6% is achieved, which compares favorably to an achieved equal error rate of 12.9% (an improvement of 33.3%) when only global features are considered. Since there is no standard international off-line signature verification data set available, most systems proposed in the literature are evaluated on data sets that differ from the one employed in this dissertation. A direct comparison of results is therefore not possible. However, since the proposed system utilises significantly different features and/or modelling techniques than those employed in the above-mentioned systems, it is very likely that a superior combined system can be obtained by combining the proposed system with any of the aforementioned systems. Furthermore, when evaluated on the same data set, the proposed system is shown to be significantly superior to three other systems recently proposed in the literature.