On the Fusion of RGB and Depth Information for Hand Pose Estimation

Published in IEEE International Conference on Image Processing (ICIP 2018), 2018

Evangelos Kazakos, Christophoros Nikou, Ioannis A Kakadiaris. IEEE International Conference on Image Processing. ICIP 2018.

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Recent advances in deep learning have spurred 3D hand pose estimation, as convolutional network (ConvNet) based methods outperformed random forests. However, in the state of the art, ConvNet based methods employ only depth images of the hand without leveraging color and texture information from the RGB domain. In this paper, we investigate whether ConvNets can learn more rich and discriminative embeddings, by combining RGB and depth information. To answer this question, we propose the fusion of RGB and depth information in a double-stream architecture. More specifically, RGB and depth images are fed into two separate networks by extracting features, which are subsequently fused at an intermediate layer of the ConvNet, implementing inputlevel fusion, feature-level fusion and score-level fusion. The double-stream scheme is coupled with a deep ConvNet, contrary to the shallow networks that are mostly proposed in the literature. Experimental results show that while the depth of the network is crucial for hand pose estimation, the doublestream nets perform very similarly with the net trained only with depth images. This may suggest that training double-stream architectures purely with supervision may be insufficient for hand pose estimation with RGB-D fusion.