I have searched the web and I have only found the differences between Image Processing and Computer Vison (also in this website too). In addition, sometimes Image Analysis is confused with Image Processing, which is untrue. Reading the Wikipedia article, it makes me thing that Image Analysis is another name for Computer Vision. Therefore I am confused. What is the real difference of those two?


Maybe the web does not have an answer, but the classical book of Image Processing by Gonzalez and Woods has. I will summarize a part from a chapter that I have read.

There is no clear boundary between the three areas of Image Processing, Image Analysis and Computer Vision. Some say that, what inputs and outputs images is Image Processing, but should the simplest task of computing the average of an image (that is a number) be excluded? Computer Vision though, is a branch of AI, that is much different from the other two fields, since it focuses on learning, making inferences and taking actions based on visual inputs. Image Analysis (a.k.a Image Understanding) is between Image Processing and Computer Vision, but with no clear boundaries. However, one could define three distinct processes based on a hierarchy level. The low-level processes consume and produce images (e.g noise reduction, contrast enhancement, image sharpening), the mid-level processes take images and output attributes (e.g edges, contours, object identities). Example tasks include image segmentation and object description and recognition. Lastly, high-level processes try to comprehend the recognized objects and at the far end, introduce cognitive functions for emulating human vision.

For more details, one can go and read the source, because luckily, that chapter is available online as a sample. The particular content lies in page 18 beginning from the third paragraph "There is no general agreement..." until the end of the next page's first paragraph "...for the methods used in this application area". I would have quote the whole content in case the website shuts down in the future, but I don't know if this is legal.

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