Biometrics Writer Recognition for Arabic language: Analysis and Classification techniques using Subwords Features

Maliki, Makki Jasim Radhi (2015) Biometrics Writer Recognition for Arabic language: Analysis and Classification techniques using Subwords Features. Doctoral thesis, University of Buckingham.

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Handwritten text in any language is believed to convey a great deal of information about writers’ personality and identity. Indeed, handwritten signature has long been accepted as an authentication of the writer’s physical stamp on financial and legal deals as well official/personal documents and works of art. Handwritten documents are frequently used as evidences in forensic tasks. Handwriting skills is learnt and developed from the early schooling stages. Research interest in behavioral biometrics was the main driving force behind the growth in research into Writer Identification (WI) from handwritten text, but recent rise in terrorism associated with extreme religious ideologies spreading primarily, but not exclusively, from the middle-east has led to a surge of interest in WI from handwritten text in Arabic and similar languages. This thesis is the main outcome of extensive research investigations conducted with the aim of developing an automatic identification of a person from handwritten Arabic text samples. My motivations and interests, as an Iraqi researcher, emanate from my multi-faceted desires to provide scientific support for my people in their fight against terrorism by providing forensic evidences, and as contribute to the ongoing digitization of the Iraqi National archive as well as the wealth of religious and historical archives in Iraq and the middle-east. Good knowledge of the underlying language is invaluable in this project. Despite the rising interest in this recognition modality worldwide, Arabic writer identification has not been addressed as extensively as Latin writer identification. However, in recent years some new Arabic writer identification approaches have been proposed some of which are reviewed in this thesis. Arabic is a cursive language when handwritten. This means that each and every writer in this language develops some unique features that could demonstrate writer’s habits and style. These habits and styles are considered as unique WI features and determining factors. Existing dominating approaches to WI are based on recognizing handwriting habits/styles are embedded in certain parts/components of the written texts. Although the appearance of these components within long text contain rich information and clues to writer identity, the most common approaches to WI in Arabic in the literature are based on features extracted from paragraph(s), line(s), word(s), character(s), and/or a part of a character. Generally, Arabic words are made up of one or more subwords at the end of each; there is a connected stroke with a certain style of which seem to be most representative of writers habits. Another feature of Arabic writing is to do with diacritics that are added to written words/subwords, to add meaning and pronunciation. Subwords are more frequent in written Arabic text and appear as part of several different words or as full individual words. Thus, we propose a new innovative approach based on a seemingly plausible hypothesis that subwords based WI yields significant increase in accuracy over existing approaches. The thesis most significant contributions can be summarized as follows: - Developed a high performing segmentation of scanned text images, that combines threshold based binarisation, morphological operation and active shape model. - Defined digital measures and formed a 15-dimensional feature vectors representations of subwords that implicitly cover its diacritics and strokes. A pilot study that incrementally added features according to writer discriminating power. This reduced subwords feature vector dimension to 8, two of which were modelled as time series. - For the dependent 8-dimensional WI scheme, we identify the best performing set of subwords (best 22 subwords out of 49 then followed by best 11 out of these 22 subwords). - We established the validity of our hypothesis for different versions of subwords based WI schemes by providing empirical evidence when testing on a number of existing text dependent and in text-dependent databases plus a simulated text-in text-dependent DB. The text-dependent scenario results exhibited possible present of the Doddington Zoo phenomena. - The final optimal subword based WI scheme, not only removes the need to include diacritics as part of the subword but also demonstrating that including diacritics within subwords impairs the WI discriminating power of subwords. This should not be taken to discredit research that are based on diacritics based WI. Also in this subword body (without diacritics) base WI scheme, resulted in eliminating the presence of Doddington Zoo effect. - Finally, a significant but un-intended consequence of using subwords for WI is that there is no difference between a text-independent scenario and text-dependent one. In fact, we shall demonstrate that the text-dependent database of the 27-words can be used to simulate the testing of the scheme for an in text-dependent database without the need to record such a DB. Finally, we discussed ways of optimising the performance of our last scheme by considering possible ways of complementing our scheme using the addition of various image texture analysis features to be extracted from subwords, lines, paragraphs or entire file of the scabbed image. These included LBP and Gabor Filter. We also suggested the possible addition of few more features.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science
Divisions: School of Computing
Depositing User: Users 4 not found.
Date Deposited: 23 Mar 2016 14:56
Last Modified: 12 Dec 2019 15:07

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