My current research interests are largely in computer vision, multimodal
human-computer interaction (HCI), affective computing and related areas.
In particular, I am interested in:
Active Appearance Models
Face and facial feature tracking
Gesture recognition (Face, body, hand)
Face and object recognition
Background subtraction, novelty detection
Object tracking (e.g. pedestrian detection and tracking,
other vehicle tracking from within a (moving) car)
Driver assistance technology, e.g. scene analysis for threat
assessment (traffic crossing the car's path)
Thermal (far-infrared) imaging for health care applications
Tracking for surveillance systems
Affective Sensing / Computing
Affective state recognition using video (visible range,
infrared), audio, and physiological measures (temperature, skin
Multimodal human-computer interaction (HCI)
Audio-Video Speech Processing (AVSP) for automatic speech
Multimodal user authentication
Image completion, image inpainting
Multimodal signal processing, in particular aspects of integrating
multiple signals (aka fusion, integration)
Far-infrared image showing the
skin temperature distribution on my face
I strongly believe that, as computer systems more and more form an
integral part of our daily life, the issues of human-computer interaction
and user-adaptive systems are highly important. In the past, the user had
to adapt to the hardware, but the trend nowadays is clearly towards more
human-like interaction through user-sensing systems. Such interaction is
inherently multi-modal. Through multi-modality we achieve robustness in
My research interests can largely be summarised as being in vision for
HCI and related signal processing areas. As the cost of camera technology
is dropping, vision systems are employed in many more application areas.
Fundamental to many of these is the ability to detect and track objects,
and to estimate their path. Also, in real-world applications, we must be
able to handle changing environmental conditions (e.g. illumination) and
non-rigid objects (varying in shape, texture, and pose.
Much of my research is use-inspired and application-driven, yet I believe
it is equally important to have a sound theoretical base. Currrently, my
work is related to applications in driver assistance technology ("Smart
Cars"), thermal imaging for night vision and health care applications, and
improved HCI technology. A new area of research is affective computing,
i.e. the ability of computer systems to sense and adapt to the affective
state (mood, emotion, stress level) of a person which, for example, has
applications in monitoring staff in safety-critical operations (e.g.
air-traffic controllers). Such technology also has applications in
health care, medicine and human performance analysis.
These are just a few examples of application areas of research in vision
and multimodal HCI. If you are interested in doing research in HCI or a
related area and would like to do a research project, please feel free to
email me at any time.
Research projects are possible at the levels of an honours degree, masters
degree, or PhD degree. A list of
possible future PhD
project topics can be found here.
Graduate Research Student Applications
In general, applications will have to come through the appropriate ANU
channels, but please keep me informed of your intentions by sending me an
email. For prospective graduate students (PhD, Masters), you will
normally need to apply for both admission as well as a scholarship. Some
useful ANU webpages:
Scholarships for PhD study are unfortunately always very limited.
Australian students and international students with a permanent resident
status can apply for an
Australian Postgraduate Award (APA)
which provides a stipend for living expenses. These students also do not
need to pay tuition fees as they are covered by the Australian government.
Applicants from Austrlia or New Zealnd with a first-class honours degree
have generally very good chances of getting an APA scholarship.
For international applicants, please note that competition for scholarships
is always very fierce and that the number of scholarships is fairly small
in comparison to the number of applicants. Applicants can therefore not
rely on getting a scholarship from the ANU, and more generally in
Australia, and should explore all avenues for getting a scholarship
elsewhere as well, e.g. from their home country. The Deparment of
Education, Science and Technology of the Australian government also has a
number of scholarships for
Postgraduate Studies. While the
Endeavour International Postgraduate Research
Scholarships (EIPRS) are administered through your ANU application
process, other scholarships, such as the
Endeavour Postgraduate Awards and region-specific
scholarships, require an application directly to DEST. Other DEST
scholarships include the Australian Development Scholarships and the
Australian Leadership Awards which may only be available to applicants
from certain countries. Please note that application deadlines for DEST
scholarships may differ from the ANU application deadline.
Summer Scholars, Visiting Students and Internships
If you are interested in a summer scholar research project, a project
as a visiting student (for example, to do research for a Masters
project at an overseas university) or a research internship under my
supervision, you should contact me by email as early as possible. In
particular, overseas students should do so at least 6 months before
the intended start date, as it takes that time to sort out visa issues.