Tell me by the way I walk

Jun 09, 2008

Biometrics is commonly associated retinal scans, iris recognition and DNA databases, but researchers in India are working on another form of biometrics that could allow law enforcement agencies and airport security to recognize suspects based on the way they were, their characteristic gait. The team reveals details of a comprehensive framework for gait recognition by computer in the inaugural issue of the Inderscience publication, the International Journal of Biometrics.

C. Nandini of the Vidya Vikas Institute of Engineering & Technology and C.N. Ravi Kumar of the S.J. College of Engineering in Mysore, India, explain that human gait typifies the motion characteristics of an individual. Viewed from the side, we each have a unique gait that makes us easily recognizable.

They point out that a camera with a side view can record a set of key frames, or stances, as a person heads for the security desk at an airport, military installation or bank, for instance. Key frames over the person's complete walk cycle, can then be converted into silhouette form and statistical analysis using so-called Shannon entropy, together with height measurements and the periodicity of the gait used to classify the person's gait.

The gait of individuals checking in at an airport could then be compared with the database, perhaps even before they enter the airport concourse. Such data compared with CCTV footage might also be used to track suspect terrorists or criminals who may otherwise be disguising their features or be carrying forged documents.

The researchers emphasize that gait recognition has a significant advantage over more well-known biometrics, such as fingerprinting and iris scanning in that it is entirely unobtrusive and can be used to identify an individual potentially from a considerable distance. "The ability to identify a possible threat from a distance gives personnel a longer time frame in which to react before a possible suspect becomes a real threat," the researchers say.

They carried out initial tests on 20 people recorded walk in a straight line at normal speed and stride, back and forth in front of a video camera placed perpendicular to their path. They obtained good recognition rates using the Shannon entropy equation and the individuals' height. Recognition performance of the system was sensitive to changes in big viewing angle above ten degrees but was reasonably robust even when the individuals changed walking speed.

Source: Inderscience Publishers

Explore further: US scientists make embryonic stem cells from adult skin

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Tracking people by their 'gait signature'

Sep 20, 2012

The National Physical Laboratory (NPL) has developed a walking gait recognition system that, in combination with other tools, can help track an individual though a CCTV monitored area by analysing the way ...

Fingerprints and faces can be faked, but not brain patterns

Feb 05, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- Sensors able to identify individuals’ brain patterns and heart rhythms could become part of security systems which also use more traditional forms of biometric recognition, thanks to pioneering work being ...

Recommended for you

Leeches help save woman's ear after pit bull mauling

22 hours ago

(HealthDay)—A pit bull attack in July 2013 left a 19-year-old woman with her left ear ripped from her head, leaving an open wound. After preserving the ear, the surgical team started with a reconnection ...

New pain relief targets discovered

Apr 17, 2014

Scientists have identified new pain relief targets that could be used to provide relief from chemotherapy-induced pain. BBSRC-funded researchers at King's College London made the discovery when researching ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

Treating depression in Parkinson's patients

A group of scientists from the University of Kentucky College of Medicine and the Sanders-Brown Center on Aging has found interesting new information in a study on depression and neuropsychological function in Parkinson's ...

Impact glass stores biodata for millions of years

(Phys.org) —Bits of plant life encapsulated in molten glass by asteroid and comet impacts millions of years ago give geologists information about climate and life forms on the ancient Earth. Scientists ...