Background and Objectives: Programmable logic devices, such as Field Programmable Gate Arrays, are well-suited for implementing biologically-inspired visual processing algorithms and among those algorithms is HMAX model. This model mimics the feedforward path of object recognition in the visual cortex.
Methods: HMAX includes several layers and its most computation intensive stage could be the S1 layer which applies 64 2D Gabor filters with various scales and orientations on the input image. A Gabor filter is the product of a Gaussian window and a sinusoid function. Using the separability property in the Gabor filter in the 0° and 90° directions and assuming the isotropic filter in the 45° and 135° directions, a 2D Gabor filter converts to two more efficient 1D filters.
Results: The current paper presents a novel hardware architecture for the S1 layer of the HMAX model, in which a 1D Gabor filter is utilized twice to create a 2D filter. Using the even or odd symmetry properties in the Gabor filter coefficients reduce the required number of multipliers by about 50%. The normalization value in every input image location is also calculated simultaneously. The implementation of this architecture on the Xilinx Virtex-6 family shows a 2.83ms delay for a 128×128 pixel input image that is a 1.86X-speedup relative to the last best implementation.
Conclusion: In this study, a hardware architecture is proposed to realize the S1 layer of the HMAX model. Using the property of separability and symmetry in filter coefficients saves significant resources, especially in DSP48 blocks.
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