Centre for Video Communications sub-group is active in the following areas:

  • Perceptually optimized video coding
  • Image and video compression (coding)
  • Compression standards (H.263, MPEG1/2/4, H.264 and HEVC)
  • Dynamically / fully configurable video coding
  • Low-complexity video coding
  • Visual perception and video coding
  • Applied visual communications (including video compression for deaf users)
  • Transport of compressed multimedia data across networks

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Current Projects

Low complexity Visual Saliency Models for Video Compression

This research project aims to develop low complexity visual saliency detection models for video compression, targeted at high definition video broadcasting applications.

The novel visual saliency model can be used to optimise the bandwidth allocation between visually important and unimportant areas of video frames in order to maximise the overall perceptual video quality at a constrained bandwidth.

The JAY-SK model is a low complexity visual saliency algorithm which derives salient regions based on sensitivity of Human Visual System (HVS) towards in-focus regions, human faces and image centre. The software (Matlab) implementation of the model and the saliency maps can be obtained by contacting j.chilukamari@rgu.ac.uk.

Complexity optimisation of HEVC Video Coding

The aim of this project is to develop new complexity optimisation techniques to implement High Efficiency Video Coding standard codecs in low-power platforms

The latest video coding standard, High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC) is designed to produce around 50% savings in bit rate compared to previous video coding standards.

However, the higher compression efficiency of HEVC comes with higher computational complexity leading to significant increase in power consumption.  Increased power consumption is a major problem in mobile hand-held video communication devices such as smart phones and tablets. The aim of this project is to develop novel complexity management techniques for HEVC.

Attachment to Mathematical Model Equations

Past Projects

Fully Configurable Video Coding

In a new fully-configurable video coding paradigm, a universal decoder can be configured as any standard-based or proprietary design of video decoder, without downloading new software.

The universal decoder can be re-designed during decoding, adapting its configuration to maximise video compression performance. This will be achieved by specifying new or changed video coding functions at the encoder, communicating these changes to the decoder, creating them in the decoder and carrying on with decoding using the new functions.  This work established a framework for Fully Configurable Video Coding and demonstrated adaptation, communication and instantiation of decoding structures in a prototype fully-configurable video codec. 

Complexity Management of H.264/AVC Video Coding Standard

This project focused on managing the computational complexity of H.264/AVC video coding standard.

This project resulted in a number of algorithms to reduce, control and manage the computational complexity of the encoding process by predicting the skipped macroblocks in video frames and thereby eliminating the processing of these macroblocks. The results showed significant manageable savings in computational complexity with negligible reduction is rate-distortion performance.

Completed: October 2006

Selected Publications:

C S Kannangara, I E G Richardson, M Bystrom, J Solera, Y Zhao, A MacLennan & R Cooney, "Low Complexity Skip Prediction for H.264 through Lagrangian Cost Estimation", IEEE Trans. Circuits and Systems for Video Tech., vol. 16, no. 2, pp. 202-208, February 2006.C S Kannangara, "Complexity Management of H.264/AVC Video Compression", PhD Thesis, The Robert Gordon University, October 2006.I. E. G. Richardson and C. S. Kannangara, "Encoder control system", UK Patent application 0524663.2, December 2005.

A New Video Quality Metric for Compressed Video

This project developed novel algorithms for effectively measuring perceived quality of multimedia video sequences compressed using block-based video coding algorithms.

These algorithms are computationally simple to implement and enable video coding algorithms to make accurate estimation of visual quality within reasonable computation time. 

Completed in 2012

Selected Publications:

A Bhat, C S Kannangara, I Richardson, “A full reference quality metric for compressed video based on mean squared error and video content”, IEEE Trans. Circuits and Systems for Video Technology, Vol. 22, Issue 2, February 2012, pp 165-173.A. Bhat, I. E. Richardson & C. S. Kannangara, “A Novel Perceptual Quality Metric for Video Compression”, Proc. International Picture Coding Symposium 2009, Chicago, May 2009, doi: 10.1109/PCS.2009.5167424.

Video Compression with Adaptive Computation for Mobile Multimedia Terminals

This project has resulted in developing H.264/AVC and H.263/MPEG-4 software codecs that incorporate our unique patent-pending low complexity algorithms.

This low-complexity video coding technology enables high quality video compression at low processing power consumption levels, leading to longer battery life in mobile devices.

Funded by: Scottish Enterprise

Completed: 2006

Complexity management of video encoders

Software implementation of block-based video coding standards has been used in a wide range of applications.

In many cases, such as real-time multimedia systems or power-constrained systems, the coding performance of software-only video encoders and decoders is limited by computational complexity. The objective of this research work is to develop techniques to manage computational complexity of video encoders. These techniques aim to provide significant complexity saving as well as adaptively controlling the computational complexity.

Completed: 2003

Original contributions:

I E G Richardson and Y Zhao, "Adaptive Management of Video Encoder Complexity", Journal of Real-Time Imaging, Vol. 8, No. 4, Aug 2002, pp. 291-301.Y Zhao and I E G Richardson, "Computational Complexity Management of Motion Estimation in Video Encoders", IEEE Data Compression Conference, 2-4 April, 2002, Snowbird, UT, USA, pp. 483

High Speed Digital Communications for Performance Monitoring in the Oil Industry

The aim of the project is to identify improvements to the communication system technology currently used in the oil industry to monitor of off-shore down-hole operations.

The project will investigate enhanced high-speed, robust digital communications using state of the art technology, which in the future may lead to new product development.

The main design concerns are as follows:

  • The physical communications medium is subject to various impairments, such as high attenuation and electromagnetic interference from submersible pumps used to control hydrocarbon extraction rate.
  • Component reliability is essential for permanent down-hole operations at high temperature operations.
  • The power budget is typically limited due both to sub-sea vendor restrictions and low-power requirements for efficient heat dissipation.
  • Limited footprint – the down-hole communication subsystem is located next to gauges and sensors within a narrow metalwork enclosure.

The main development stages involve:

  • characterisation of the physical medium (coaxial cable) and noise measurements
  • assessment of suitable modulation schemes
  • computer-based performance simulation
  • design and construction of communications system prototypes for laboratory and field tests.

The project involves applied research in such areas as electromagnetic theory, digital signal processing and communications, electronics, and system simulation and testing.

Sponsorship:

This project comes under the Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) scheme sponsored by the Department of Trade and Industry, which aims to stimulate collaboration between industry and academia. The collaborating parties are The Robert Gordon University (Aberdeen) and QuantX Wellbore Instrumentation Ltd (Aberdeen), also a funding partner and a joint venture of The Expro International Group Plc, and Baker Hughes 

Completed: 2006

Publications

Journal Papers

Journal Papers by Centre for Video Communications Staff

  1. A Bhat, C S Kannangara, I Richardson, “A full reference quality metric for compressed video based on mean squared error and video content”, IEEE Trans. Circuits and Systems for Video Technology, Vol. 22, Issue 2, February 2012, pp 165-173
  2. C S Kannangara, J Philp, I Richardson, M Bystrom & M de Frutos-lopez, “A Syntax for Defining, Communicating, and Implementing Video Decoder Function and Structure”, IEEE Trans. Circuits and Systems for Video Technology, Vol. 20, Issue 9, September 2010 , pp 1176 – 1186.
  3. A. Bhat, I. Richardson and C. S. Kannangara, "A new perceptual quality metric for compressed video based on mean squared error", Signal Processing: Image Communication, Vol 25, 2010, pp. 588 - 596
  4. C S Kannangara, I E Richardson , M Bystrom & Y Zhao, "Complexity Control of H.264/AVC based on Mode-conditional Cost Probability Distributions", IEEE Trans. Multimedia, Vol. 11, Issue 3, 2009, pp 433 - 442.
  5. C S Kannangara, I E Richardson & A J Miller, "Computational Complexity Management of a Real-Time H.264/AVC Encoder", IEEE Trans. Circuits and Systems for Video Tech., vol. 18, no. 9, pp. 1191-1200, September 2008.
  6. M. Bystrom, I. Richardson and Y. Zhao, "Efficient Mode Selection for H.264 Complexity Reduction in a Bayesian Framework," Signal Processing: Image Communication, vil. 23, iss. 2, pp. 71-86, February 2008.
  7. C S Kannangara, I E G Richardson, M Bystrom, J Solera, Y Zhao, A MacLennan & R Cooney, "Low Complexity Skip Prediction for H.264 through Lagrangian Cost Estimation", IEEE Trans. Circuits and Systems for Video Tech., vol. 16, no. 2, pp. 202-208, February 2006.
  8. I E G Richardson and S Kannangara, "Fast subjective video quality measurement with user feedback", Electronics Letters Vol. 40, Number 13, June 2004 pp. 799-800.
  9. Y Zhao and I E G Richardson, "Macroblock Classification for Complexity Management of Video Encoders", Signal Processing: Image Communication, Vol. 18, Issue 9, Oct. 2003 pp. 801-811.
  10. I E G Richardson and Y Zhao, "Adaptive Management of Video Encoder Complexity", Journal of Real-Time Imaging, Vol. 8, No. 4, Aug 2002, pp. 291-301.

Contributions to symposia and compiled volumes

Contributions to symposia and compiled volumes by Centre for Video Communications Staff

Year 2013

  1. Jayachandra Chilukamari, Sampath Kannangara and Grant Maxwell, “A DCTBased In-Focus Visual Saliency Detection Algorithm”, IEEE International Conference on Consumer Electronics, Berlin, September 2013
  2. Jayachandra Chilukamari, Sampath Kannangara and Grant Maxwell, “Investigation of the Effectiveness of Video Quality Metrics in Video Pre-Processing”, IEEE International Conference on Consumer Electronics, Berlin, September 2013

Year 2010

  1. C. S. Kannangara, J. Philp, M. Bystrom and I. Richardson, "A Universal Video Decoder for Fully Configurable Video Coding", ICCE 2010, Las Vegas, January 2010 (Accepted)

Year 2009

  1. I. Richardson, C. S. Kannangara, M. Bystrom, J. Philp and M. de Frutos Lopez, “Implementing fully Configurable Video Coding”, ICIP 2009, Cairo, Egypt, November 2009.
  2. J. Philp, C. S. Kannangara, M. Bystrom, M. de Frutos Lopez and I. Richardson, “Decoder Description syntax for Fully Configurable Video Coding”, ICIP 2009, Cairo, Egypt, November 2009.
  3. Y. Zhao, M. Bystrom, C.S. Kannangara, I.E. Richardson and J. Philp, "A Random Access Protocol for Configurable Video Coding", ISO/IEC JTC1/SC29/WG11 MPEG2009/M16927, Oct. 2009, Xian, China.
  4. A. Bhat, I. E. Richardson & C. S. Kannangara, “A Novel Perceptual Quality Metric for Video Compression,” PCS 2009, Chicago, May 2009.
  5. I. Richardson, C. S. Kannangara, M. Bystrom, J. Philp and M. De. Frutos-Lopez, “A Framework for Fully Configurable Video Coding,” PCS 2009, Chicago, May 2009.
  6. Abharana Bhat, Iain Richardson and Sampath Kannangara, "A New Perceptual Quality Metric for Compressed Video" ICASSP 2009, Taipei, Taiwan, April 2009. 

Year 2008

  1. C. S. Kannangara, I. Richardson, M. Bystrom, M. de-Frutos-Lopez, "Fast, Dynamic Configuration of Transforms for Video Coding," ICIP 2008, San Diego, California, October 2008.
  2. I. Richardson, M. Bystrom, M. de-Frutos-Lopez, C. S. Kannangara, "Dynamic Transform Replacement in an H.264 Codec," ICIP 2008, San Diego, California, October 2008.
  3. I. Richardson, M. Bystrom, S. Kannangara and M. de Frutos-Lopez, "Dynamic Configuration: Beyond Video Coding Standards", Plenary Presentation, IEEE System on Chip Conference (SOCC08), Newport Beach, CA, September 2008.

Year 2007

  1. Chaminda Kannangara, Yafan Zhao, Iain Richardson and Maja Bystrom, "Complexity Control of H.264 Based on a Bayesian Framework," PCS 2007, Portugal, November 2007.
  2. A Bhat, I E Richardson and L Muir, "Perceptually Optimised Variable Bilateral Filter for Low Bit-rate Video Coding ", PGNet,Liverpool, 27 - 28 June 2007.

Year 2006

  1. Y Zhao, M Bystrom and I E G Richardson, " A MAP Framework for Efficient SKIP/CODE Mode Decision in H.264", ICIP2006, Atlanta, USA, 8-11 October 2006.
  2. Chaminda Sampath Kannangra, Iain Richardson and Tony Miller, "Computational Management of an H.264 Encoder", PCS 2006, Beijing, China, 24~26 April 2006.
  3. I E G Ricardson, M Bystrom, and Y Zhao, "Fast H.264 Skip Mode Selection Using an Estimation Framework", Proceedings of PCS 2006, Beijing, China, 24-26 April, 2006. 

Year 2005

  1. C. S. Kannangara and I. E. G. Richardson, "Computational Control of an H.264 Encoder Through Lagrangian Cost Function Estimation", VLBV 2005, Sardinia, Italy, 15-16 September 2005.
  2. Y Zhong, I Ricardson, A Miller, and Y Zhao, " Perceptual Quality Of H.264/AVC Deblocking Filter" IEE VIE 2005, pp379-384,Glasgow, 4~6 April, 2005. 
  3. C S Kannangara, I E G Richardson, M Bystrom, J Solera, Y Zhao, A MacLennan & R Cooney, "Complexity Reduction of H.264 using Lagrange Optimization Methods," IEE VIE 2005, Glasgow, 4~6 April, 2005.

Year 2004

  1. I E G Richardson and Y Zhao, "Video Encoder Complexity Reduction by Estimation Skip Mode Distortion", Proc. ICIP 2004, Singapore, 24~27, Oct. 2004. 
  2. Y Zhong, I Richardson, A Sahraie and P McGeorge, "Influence of Task and Scene Content on Subjective Video Quality", Lecture Notes in Computer Science, Volume 3211 / 2004, pp. 295.  
  3. C S Kannangara, I E G Richardson and Y Zhao, "H.264 Complexity Management using Macroblock Skip-Mode Prediction", PGNet,Liverpool, 28~29, June 2004.

Year 2003

  1. Y Zhong, I Richardson, A Sahraie and P Mcgeorge, "Qualitative and quantitative assessment in video compression", 12th European Conference on Eye Movements, 20-24 August 2003, Dundee,Scotland
  2. Y Zhao and I E G Richardson, "Macroblock skip-mode prediction for Complexity control of Video Encoders", Proc. IEE Visual Information Engineering, 7~9 July 2003, Surrey, U.K, pp. 5-8.
  3. Y Zhao and I E G Richardson, "Macroblock Classification for Video Encoder Complexity Management", Proc. International Picture Coding Symposium, 23-25 April 2003, Saint-Malo, France, pp. 371-376.  

Year 2002

  1. Y Zhao and I E G Richardson, "Complexity Management for Video Encoders", Doctoral Symposium, ACM Multimedia Conference, 1-6 December 2002, Juan Les Pins, France, pp. 647-649.
  2. Y Zhao and I E G Richardson, "Computational Complexity Management of Motion Estimation in Video Encoders", IEEE Data Compression Conference, 2-4 April, 2002, Snowbird, UT, USA, pp. 483.

Year 2001

  1. I E G Richardson and Y Zhao, "Adaptive Algorithms for Variable Complexity Video Coding", Proc. International Conference on Image Processing (ICIP01), Thessaloniki, Greece, October 2001. 
  2. I E G Richardson and Y Zhao, "Video CODEC Complexity Management", Proc. International Picture Coding Symposium (PCS01), Seoul, Korea, April 2001. 

Abstracts and short papers

Abstracts and Short Papers by Centre for Video Communications Staff

  1. Y Zhao, L Muir and I E G Richardson, "Implementing MPEG-4 Visual in software", IEE Seminar on Visual Media Standards, 25 April 2002.

Patent applications and Book/Thesis

Patent Applications and Book Thesis by Centre for Video Communications Staff

Patent applications

  1. I. E. G. Richardson and C. S. Kannangara, "Encoder control system", UK Patent application 0524663.2, December 2005.
  2. I E G Richardson and Sampath Kannangara, "Subjective video quality measurement with user feedback," European Patent application EP20050252018, 2005.
  3. I E G Richardson and Yafan Zhao, "Macroblock Classification for Complexity Management of Video Encoders," UK Patent application 0229354.6, filed 18 December 2002.

Book/Thesis

  1. C S Kannangara, "Complexity Management of H.264/AVC Video Compression", The Robert Gordon University, October 2006
  2. Y Zhao, "Complexity Management of Video Encoders", The Robert Gordon University, March 2004