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Face matching for post-disaster family reunification.
The National Library of Medicine (NLM) has developed People LocatorTM (PL), a Web-based system for family reunification in cases of a natural or man-made disaster. PL accepts photos and brief text meta-data (name, age, etc.) of missing or found persons. Searchers may query PL with text information, but text data is often incomplete or inconsistent. Adding an image-based search capability, i.e., matching faces in query photos to those already stored in the system, would significantly benefit the user experience. We report on our face matching R&D that aims to provide robust face localization and matching on digital photos of variable quality. In this article, we review relevant research and present our approach to robust near-duplicate image detection as well as face matching. We describe the integration of our face matching system with PL, report on its performance, and compare it to other publicly available face recognition systems. In contrast to these systems that have many good quality well-illuminated sample images for each person, our algorithms are hampered by the lack of training examples for individual faces, as those are unlikely in a disaster setting.