We described a video-rate surveillance algorithm to detect and track people from a stationary camera, and to determine if they are carrying objects or moving unencumbered. The contribution of the paper is the shape analysis algorithm that both determines if a person is carrying an object and segments the object from the person so that it can be tracked, e.g., during an exchange of objects between two people. As the object is segmented, an appearance model of the object is constructed. The method combines periodic motion estimation with static symmetry analysis of the silhouettes of a person in each frame of the sequence. Experimental results demonstrate robustness and real-time performance of the proposed algorithm.
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