Yet more seam carving

When last we visited the wonderful world of image "retargeting" by means of the cunning seam carving technique, I envisaged a decent free seam carving Photoshop plugin in the near-ish future.

Well, that hasn't turned up yet. But a couple of options besides and that GIMP plugin have.

The inventively named Content Aware Image Resizer is a simple command line utility that can only cope with BMP format images, but gets the job done (a bit slowly...), is multithreaded, and is GPL-licensed so C++ hackers can fiddle with the source.

Resizor is a standalone Windows app, which is only single-threaded but still seems a bit faster than CAIR (I think is faster now than it used to be, too), has a bunch of fancy resizing algorithms as well as the seam carving "Retarget" option, and has a graphical interface too.

Resizor only lets you make an image smaller by seam carving (one of the interesting features of the technique is that it can just as easily enlarge images as shrink them), but it does what most people want to do.

4 Responses to “Yet more seam carving”

  1. Alan Says:

    I must not be "most people".
    I have a whole bunch of 1600x1200 wallpapers, and I have been using seam carving (and other methods) to "teak" them out to widescreen 1920x1200. I've had some success, and some hideous failures. Failures typically happen when there's a human form over ~80% of the picture width- the ends of the picture get a "pinched" look (with masking) or the human form gets distorted (without masking).

    So far, Liquid Resize works best for me.

  2. rcousine Says:

    Whoa! I just realized that this concept is a practical implementation of the decade-old FlikFX joke!

  3. Daniel Rutter Says:

    Making the retargeting consistent from frame to frame would require extra work, and it'd be impossible to do it without weird stuff happening when things in the frame moved relative to each other, or the camera itself moved. But yes, you actually could squish motion video this way. It'd be fascinating to see how it looked.

    Note that Pixar have done something like this for the 4:3 versions of at least some of their movies.

    They don't seam carve the widescreen version into full frame - instead, they "reshoot the scenes", moving everything around so it fits better on a screen with a different aspect ratio, then rendering again.

  4. sockatume Says:

    Manually assigning the weights to different parts of portraits can make for a rather entertaining caricature

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