US20150116458A1 - Method and apparatus for generating enhanced 3d-effects for real-time and offline appplications - Google Patents

Method and apparatus for generating enhanced 3d-effects for real-time and offline appplications Download PDF

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US20150116458A1
US20150116458A1 US14/522,278 US201414522278A US2015116458A1 US 20150116458 A1 US20150116458 A1 US 20150116458A1 US 201414522278 A US201414522278 A US 201414522278A US 2015116458 A1 US2015116458 A1 US 2015116458A1
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method
image
3d
depth
2d
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US14/522,278
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Javed Sabir Barkatullah
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Vefxi Corp
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Barkatech Consulting LLC
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    • H04N13/0018
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04NPICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
    • H04N13/00Stereoscopic video systems; Multi-view video systems; Details thereof
    • H04N13/10Processing, recording or transmission of stereoscopic or multi-view image signals
    • H04N13/106Processing image signals
    • H04N13/128Adjusting depth or disparity
    • H04N13/0022
    • H04N13/0029
    • H04N13/0059
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04NPICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
    • H04N13/00Stereoscopic video systems; Multi-view video systems; Details thereof
    • H04N13/20Image signal generators
    • H04N13/261Image signal generators with monoscopic-to-stereoscopic image conversion

Abstract

A method for adjusting and generating enhanced 3D-effects for 2D to 3D image and video conversion applications includes controlling a depth location of a zero parallax plane within a depth field of an image scene to adjust parallax of objects in the image scene, controlling a depth volume of objects in the image scene to one of either exaggerate or reduce 3D-effect of the image scene, controlling a depth location of a segmentation plane within the depth field of the image scene, dividing the objects in the image scene into a foreground group and a background group, selectively increasing or decreasing depth volume of objects in the foreground group, selectively increasing or decreasing depth separation of objects in the foreground group relative to the objects in the background group, and generating an updated depth map file for a 2D-image.

Description

    CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
  • This application claims benefit of U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No 61/897787, filed Oct. 30, 2013, which is herein incorporated by reference.
  • FIELD OF THE INVENTION
  • Embodiments here relate generally to the field of 2D to 3D video and image conversion performed either in real time or offline. More particularly, the embodiments relate to a method and apparatus for enhancing and/or exaggerating depth and negative parallax and adjusting the zero-parallax plane, also referred to as the screen plane, for 3D-image rendering on different 3D display technologies and formats.
  • BACKGROUND
  • With the rising sale of 3D-enabled TVs and personal devices in the consumer segment, the need to release new and old movies in 3D is increasing. In the commercial application space, the use of large screen electronic billboards which can display attention grabbing 3D-images for advertising or informational purposes has increased. Because of the increasing demand for creating 3D-content, the demand for automatically or semi-automatically convert existing 2D-contents to 3D contents increases. Enhancing the 3D-experience of the consumers and viewers can produce further growth of 3D entertainment and advertisement market. A demand exists for tools and services to generate stunning 3D-image effects.
  • Traditionally, converting 2D videos to 3D for professional application starts with generating a depth map of the image for each video frame using a very labor intensive manual process of roto-scoping, where objects in each frame are manually and painstakingly traced by the artist and depth information for each object is painted by hand. For consumer applications such as built-in automated 2D to 3D function in 3D-TV or game consoles, the converted 3D-image suffers from extremely poor depth and pop-out effects. Moreover, there is no automated control to modify the zero-parallax plane position and artificially exaggerate pop-out or depth of selective objects for enhanced special-effects.
  • Numerous research publications exist on methods of automatically generating depth map from a mono-ocular 2D-image for the purpose of converting the 2D-image to 3D-image. The methods range from very simplistic heuristics to very complicated and compute intensive image analysis. Simple heuristics may be suitable for real time conversion application but provides poor 3D quality. On the other hand, complex mathematical analysis may provide good 3D-image quality but may not be suitable for real time application and hardware implementation.
  • A greyscale image represents the depth map of an image in which each pixel is assigned a value between and including 0 and 255. A value of 255 (100% white level) indicates the pixel is in the front most and a value of 0 represents the pixel is in the back most. The depth value of a pixel is used to calculate the horizontal (x-axis) offset of the pixel for left and right eye view images. In particular, if the calculated offset is w for pixel at position (x, y) in the original image, then this pixel is placed at position (x+w, y) in the left image and (x−w, y) in the right image. If the value of the offset w for a pixel is positive, it creates a negative parallax where the pixel appears to pop out of the screen. Alternatively, if the value of the offset w for a pixel is negative, it creates a positive parallax where the pixel appears to be behind the screen plane. If the offset w is zero, the pixel appears on the screen plane. The larger the offset, the greater the disparity between the left and right eye view and hence larger the depth inside the screen or pop out of the screen. Hence, given a depth map for a 2D, or monocular, image, by selectively manipulating the offsets the pixels for 3D rendering, it is possible to artificially enhance or exaggerate 3D effects in a scene and this transformations can be done in real time or offline.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • FIG. 1 shows an exemplary block diagram of the system, according to one embodiment of the invention.
  • FIG. 2 illustrates an exemplary transformation from a depth value for a pixel in the 2D image to calculate its offset for placement in the left and right eye view images.
  • FIG. 3 illustrates with four settings of an exemplary graphical user interface (GUI) where user can move the location of the screen plane (also known as zero plane) in the scene, according to one software embodiment of the invention.
  • FIG. 4 illustrates a graphical user interface (GUI) for user to control depth volume, according to one embodiment of the invention.
  • FIG. 5 illustrates an exemplary method for exaggerating depth by adding a step offset for all depths equal or greater than a user defined value, according to one embodiment of the invention. In another embodiment, the slope of the depth to offset function is modified to exaggerate the 3D-effect.
  • FIG. 6 illustrates an exemplary method for exaggerating depth by adding a step offset and scaling the slope of the depth to offset function for all depths equal or greater than a user defined value, according to one embodiment of the invention.
  • FIG. 7 illustrates yet another exemplary method for exaggerating depth by using an exponential transfer function for depth to offset, according to one embodiment of the invention.
  • FIG. 8 illustrates an exemplary flow chart for rendering exaggerated 3D image, given a 2D image source and its depth map, according to one embodiment of the invention.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION
  • Embodiments here relate to a method, apparatus, system, and computer program for modifying, enhancing or exaggerating 3D-image rendered given a mono-ocular (2D) image source and its depth map. In an interactive mode, user can control and change the attributes and quality for 3D-rendition of a 2D-image using graphical user interface (GUI). Optionally, such control settings can be presented to the 3D-render engine as commands stored in a file and read by 3D-rendering application or routine. These attributes and quality of the 3D image are not specific to a particular 3D-format but can be used for all 3D formats including but not limited to various stereo-3D formats and glasses free multi-view auto-stereo formats. The embodiments can take advantage of the computing power of general purpose CPU, GPU or dedicated FPGA or ASIC chip to process sequence of images from video frames of a streaming 2D-video to generate 3D video frames. Depending on the available processing capabilities of the processing unit and complexity of desired transformations, the conversion of 2D video frames to 3D can be done in real.
  • In one embodiment, the enhanced 3D-experience may be implemented as a software application running on a computing device such as a personal computer, tablet computer or smart-phone. A user receives a streaming 2D-video from the internet or from a file stored on a local storage device. The user then uses the application GUI to adjust the quality and attributes of 3D-video in an automatic 2D video to 3D conversion and display it on the attached 3D display in real time. In one embodiment, the converted enhanced 3D-video can be stored back on the local or network storage device.
  • In one embodiment, the 2D to 3D conversion process is implemented as a software application running on a computing device such as a personal computer, tablet computer or smart-phone. A user loads a video from a file stored on a local or network attached storage device and uses the application to automatically or in an interactive mode convert the 2D video to 3D and store it back offline on the local or network attached disk. In one embodiment, the user settings for 3D attributes can be stored in a file using some pre-defined syntax such as XML and can be read in by the 2D to 3D conversion application and applied during the rendering of the 3D-video.
  • In one embodiment, the enhanced 3D render method is implemented in dedicated hardware such as an FPGA or a custom ASIC chip as an independent 3D-render application. In one embodiment, the enhanced 3D render method is implemented in dedicated hardware such as an FPGA or a custom ASIC chip as part of a larger 2D to 3D conversion application. In one embodiment, the enhanced 3D-render video conversion system is implemented as a stand-alone converter box. In one embodiment, the entire 2D to 3D video conversion system is implemented a circuit board or a daughter card. In one embodiment, a stand-alone implantation of the conversion system can be attached to the output of a streaming video receiver, broadcast TV receiver, satellite-TV receiver or cable-TV receiver and the output of standalone converter box can be connected to 3D-displays.
  • In one embodiment, the enhanced 3D render method is implemented as a software application utilizing the graphics processing unit (GPU) of a computing device such as a personal computer, tablet computer or smart-phone to enhance performance.
  • In one embodiment, the system receives a 2D image and its depth map either as separately but synchronized fashion or together in a single frame, usually referred to as 2D+D format, and the software or hardware implementation of the enhanced 3D-render method uses that to produce the enhanced 3D-image.
  • FIG. 1 shows an exemplary block diagram of a 2D to 3D conversion process, according to one embodiment. In one embodiment, the process comprises receiving single or a sequence of image frames. The depth map generator block 102 generates the depth map 112 from the 2D-source image. In one embodiment, the depth map 112 is used by the enhanced 3D-render block 106 that generates a transformed depth map to calculate new pixel displacements by the render engine.
  • FIG. 2 illustrates one embodiment of transformation from pixel depth to pixel offset in 3D-image. Lines 101 and 102 are the linear transformation from depth to offset for the right and left eye view images. 103 represents a plane in the depth field where both the left and right eye view offsets are equal and zero. All objects with depths and hence offsets to the right of this plane will have negative parallax, meaning the object will appear to pop out of the screen. All objects with depths and hence offsets to the left of this plane will have positive parallax, meaning the object will appear to be behind the screen.
  • FIG. 3 illustrates one embodiment of graphical user interface (GUI) 202 to enable the user to adjust the location of the zero plane, which is the point in the graph 201 where the two lines meet The GUI 202 shows offset of the zero plane to be zero. Different situations of this GUI are shown with different adjustments represented by the lines above them. GUI 204 shows an offset in which the zero plane position is 127 on the GUI and the graphical representation is shown as 203. Similarly, GUI 206 shows the offset of 170, with the zero plane moving to the right as shown as 205, and GUI 208 shows the offset of 255, with the zero plane to the farthest right position.
  • FIG. 4 illustrate one embodiment of graphical user interface (GUI) 302 to enable user adjust the amount of depth in the 3D-image by adjusting the amount of disparity produced between the left and right eye view. GUI 304 sows a lower value for disparity. As shown by comparing 301 and 303, the lower values result in less depth.
  • FIG. 5 illustrates two embodiments of graphical user interface (GUI) consisting of controls 402, 404 and 406 that enable user to artificially separate objects selectively from background objects and pop it out. A step offset value 403 is used in one embodiment. A scaled slope 405 is used in another embodiment. The depth location where the offset or slope scaling is indicated by 401 and is controlled by the GUI control 402.
  • FIG. 6 illustrates one embodiment of graphical user interface (GUI) where both step and slope scale is applied simultaneously. The GUI 502 with the values shows results in the representation shown as 503.
  • FIG. 7 illustrates one embodiment where the depth to offset transformation is exponential. This creates an effect where all the background objects are squished flat, while the objects in the foreground have increasingly exaggerated depth and/or pop-out. In general, the exponential function can be replaced by any nonlinear, monotonic function to create special 3D-effects.
  • FIG. 8 illustrates one embodiment of a flowchart for enhanced 3D-render method. At 800, the process obtains the control data needed for the further processing. This data may include maximum disparity, zero plane position, and the segmentation type, amount and location. At 802, the process calculates the offset for the right and left eye views using the pixel depth from the depth map and the control data. At 804, the process renders the right and left eye view using the offsets for each pixel.
  • Reference in the specification to “an embodiment,” “one embodiment,” “some embodiments,” or “other embodiments” means that a particular feature, structure, or characteristic described in connection with the embodiments is included in at least some embodiments, but not necessarily all embodiments. The various appearances of “an embodiment,” “one embodiment,” or “some embodiments” are not necessarily all referring to the same embodiments. If the specification states a component, feature, structure, or characteristic “may,” “might,” or “could” be included, that particular component, feature, structure, or characteristic is not required to be included. If the specification or claim refers to “a” or “an” element, that does not mean there is only one of the element. If the specification or claims refer to “an additional” element, that does not preclude there being more than one of the additional element.
  • While the invention has been described in conjunction with specific embodiments thereof, many alternatives, modifications and variations of such embodiments will be apparent to those of ordinary skill in the art in light of the foregoing description.

Claims (16)

What is claimed is:
1. A method for adjusting and generating enhanced 3D-effects for real time and offline 2D to 3D image and video conversion applications consisting of:
controlling a depth location of a zero parallax plane within a depth field of an image scene to adjust parallax of objects in the image scene;
controlling a depth volume of objects in the image scene to one of either exaggerate or reduce 3D-effect of the image scene;
controlling a depth location of a segmentation plane within the depth field of the image scene, dividing the objects in the image scene into a foreground group and a background group based on a location of the objects relative to the segmentation plane;
selectively increasing or decreasing depth volume of objects in the foreground group;
selectively increasing or decreasing depth separation of objects in the foreground group relative to the objects in the background group; and
generating an updated depth map file for a 2D-image based upon the controlling, and increasing and decreasing.
2. The method of claim 1, further comprising rendering an enhanced 3D-image using the updated depth map.
3. The method of claim 1, wherein the method further comprises a software application running on a computing device.
4. The method of claim 3, wherein the computing device comprises one of a server computer, personal computer, tablet computer or smart-phone, graphics processor unit.
5. The method of claim 1, further comprising receiving a 2D-still image or a streaming 2D-video from a network with an associated depth map.
6. The method of claim 1, further comprising reading a 2D-still image or a 2D-video from a file stored on a local or remote storage device with the associated depth map image.
7. The method of claim 1, further comprising generating a depth map for each 2D-still image or a sequence of depth maps for each frame in a 2D-video.
8. The method of claim 1, further comprising reading meta-instructions for depth map enhancement for the 2D-image or video from a file stored on a local or remote storage device.
9. The method of claim 1, further comprising enabling a user to enhance the depth map through one of a set of graphical user interfaces (GUI), command line instructions, and custom input devices.
10. The method of claim 2, wherein rendering a 3D image comprises one of rendering an anaglyph, stereo-3D or auto-stereo 3D using the enhanced depth map.
11. The method of claim 2, further comprising one of displaying generated 3D image or video on and attached 3D display in real time, and storing the 3D image on local or remote storage device(s) for offline viewing.
12. The method of claim 1, further comprising storing the generated enhanced depth map as grey scale images on a storage device.
13. The method of claim 1, further comprising storing user modifications of the depth map as a sequence of instructions associated with each image in a control file using a pre-defined syntax.
14. The method of claim 1, wherein the method is executed by a dedicated hardware device.
15. The method of claim 1, wherein the method is executed by hardware contained in a stand-alone converter box.
16. The method of claim 1, wherein the method is implemented as one of a circuit board, a daughter card or any other plug-in card or module.
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