[OSM-legal-talk] Google awarded patent on automatic correction of road geometry from imagery
mike at ayeltd.biz
Wed Jun 4 09:26:46 UTC 2014
This comes to me via Simon Poole, so the OSMF board is aware.
The invention claimed is a "A computer-implemented method" so I am not
sure scan-reading the patent whether that includes humans looking at
digital imagery and making db corrections via computer. If so, then
obviously (our) prior art is going to blow this apart. If not, then
anyone working on automated road detection algorithms should be aware.
Interestingly, if you scroll down through the patent itself, you'll see
that they specifically mention correcting US TIGER data.
Map data are overlaid on satellite imagery. A road segment within the
map data is identified, and the satellite imagery indicates that the
road segment is at a different geographic position than a geographic
position indicated by the map data. The endpoints of the road segment in
the map data are aligned with the corresponding positions of the
endpoints in the satellite imagery. A road template is applied at an
endpoint of the road segment in the satellite imagery, and the angle of
the road template that matches the angle of the road segment indicated
by the satellite imagery is determined by optimizing a cost function.
The road template is iteratively shifted along the road segment in the
satellite imagery. The geographic position of the road segment within
the map data is updated responsive to the positions and angles of the
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