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The necessity of effective decision-making using image data mining is becoming quite clear now. Many researchers are focusing their attention on transforming the image data mining process. Image mining is the process of discovering relevant information from images stored in large databases. It is based on the basic principle of machine learning, pattern recognition and others as well.
This is becoming an emerging field of research finding its application in extensive areas including medical field, remote sensing, agriculture, industries and educational field. For instance; the use of very high resolution satellite images for observation of minute objects and others as well. Data mining methods are being used to mine images after transforming images into some form of data sets. Image mining comprises two basic processes including: transformation of images into qualitative sub data sets and applying data mining technique on transformed data sets. It results in knowledge discovery from large databases. Decision making bodies in different fields like medical, business, education sector and others are trying to get useful information from the existing databases.
In the present scenario, the consumer is ready to move from one retail shop to another if there is scope even for marginal saving. Businesses are extracting images from eCommerce websites and collecting other relevant information influencing customer behavior. Semantic Analysis is being carried out by businesses to collect comprehensive information about product catalog and extract analysis on product details. For instance, how was white iPad case differently priced from black one and similarly. This technique is helping buyers in making informed decisions. To sway the informed buyers, businesses want to offer critical information that influences customer behavior by helping them in price comparison.
Google has started a service lately known as Google Takeout enabling users to extract data including images from the cloud. This product is especially designed for an attentive cloud user who is concerned about privacy, accidental data loss or other similar issues. Google Takeout is a great option for data mining professionals and others who want to have some great time without taking all the images in a hard disk or other such secondary storage devices. Similarly, Tumblr is another microblogging and social networking site transforming the image mining scenario by storing different types of multimedia files.
Image processing is the analysis and manipulation of an image by converting it into digitized form and extracting relevant information. It is one of the rapidly growing technologies with its applications in varied aspects of a business. Image processing is carried out in three steps:
- Importing the image using advanced techniques such as digital photography
- Analyzing image and modifying it using data compression, image enhancement and other techniques
- In last stage, an altered image or report is recovered using image analysis
- Observing the images which are not clearly visible known as visualization
- Image retrieval technique involves extracting the image of interest
- Image sharpening and restoration
- Creating patterns from image helps in measuring different objects in an image
- Image recognition helps in identifying the objects in an image
Businesses crawl images from website and collect relevant information about product range and price range to gain competitive advantage. Extracting product images from Amazon help in extracting product information including title, cost, description, details and others as well. Businesses are not only scraping product details but downloading all images from a website and a webpage to gain details about their competitors. Image Scraper and other tools such as Webpage Image Downloader are being used to grab pictures from the web and download images based on different keywords. These tools are extremely easy to use and can be used to extract data after the installation.
Advancement in the field of image retrieval and storage technology has led to remarkable growth in extremely large image databases. These images are being analyzed properly to offer advantage to humans. Image mining deals with the extraction of knowledge, image data relationship or other patterns stored in databases. Image mining is more than just extension of data mining. It is a venture requiring expertise in multiple domains including image processing, image retrieval, data mining, artificial intelligence and others as well. A great amount of research work is going on to ensure further advancement in this field.