Date of Award


Degree Name

MS in Electrical Engineering


Electrical Engineering


John Oliver


In this paper, a computer vision system for counting people standing in line is presented. In this application, common techniques such as Adaptive Background Subtraction (ABS), blob tracking with Kalman filter, and occlusion resistive techniques are used to detect and track people. Additionally, a novel method using Dual Adaptive Background Subtractors (DABS) is implemented for dynamically determining the line region in a real-world crowded scene, and also as an alternative target acquisition to regular ABS. The DABS technique acts as a temporal bandpass filter for motion, helping identify people standing in line while in the presence of other moving people. This is achieved by using two ABS with different temporal adaptiveness. Unlike other computer vision papers which perform tests in highly controlled environments, the DABS technique is tested in a crowded Starbucks© at the Cal Poly student union. For any length of people standing in line, result shows that DABS has a lower mean error by one or more people when compared to ABS. Even in challenging crowded scenes where the line can reach 19 people in length, DABS achieves a Normalized RMS Error of 43%.