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ISPRS J Photogramm Remote Sens. 2014 Jan;87(100):205-215.

Quantitative evaluation of variations in rule-based classifications of land cover in urban neighbourhoods using WorldView-2 imagery.

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Department of Geoinformatics (Z_GIS), Salzburg University, Schillerstr. 30, 5020 Salzburg, Austria.
West University of Timisoara, Department of Geography, Vasile Parvan Avenue, 300223 Timisoara, Romania.


The increasing availability of high resolution imagery has triggered the need for automated image analysis techniques, with reduced human intervention and reproducible analysis procedures. The knowledge gained in the past might be of use to achieving this goal, if systematically organized into libraries which would guide the image analysis procedure. In this study we aimed at evaluating the variability of digital classifications carried out by three experts who were all assigned the same interpretation task. Besides the three classifications performed by independent operators, we developed an additional rule-based classification that relied on the image classifications best practices found in the literature, and used it as a surrogate for libraries of object characteristics. The results showed statistically significant differences among all operators who classified the same reference imagery. The classifications carried out by the experts achieved satisfactory results when transferred to another area for extracting the same classes of interest, without modification of the developed rules.


Accuracy; Comparison; Experiment; Image; Land Cover; OBIA; Urban

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