I'm interested in learning about how facial recognition works. I'm especially interested in the algorithms or approach that is used. What are the leading methods for facial recognition? Is there a good overview or source to learn about a few of the most widely used algorithms for facial recognition? What would be the best handful of research papers to read first?

  • $\begingroup$ We have closed many questions like this as "too broad" (and never mind that it's a list question). What makes you think this one is better suited? $\endgroup$
    – Raphael
    Sep 2, 2013 at 10:34
  • $\begingroup$ Did you already read the Wikipedia article and the references it provides? $\endgroup$
    – adrianN
    Sep 2, 2013 at 10:59
  • $\begingroup$ Yeah, I've read Wikipedia. @Raphael, if you think it's too broad, feel free to close it. My thought was that there might be a good answer of the form "The standard approach today is to use Eigenfaces with X or Y with Z; you can read an introduction to those two techniques in papers A, B, and C." (and if that is the case, then it doesn't seem too broad to me) But I'll be glad to defer to your judgement about whether this is suitable. $\endgroup$
    – D.W.
    Sep 2, 2013 at 16:27

1 Answer 1


The simplest Face Recognition 101 would be run a PCA on the data, followed by a K-nearest neighbor classification.

but now there are more advanced techniques that you pick along, it might be using "better" classifiers like SVMs or Neural Networks or apply Bayesian learning, but then, as you move up the knowledge tree, you will realize you need your data itself to be more robust.. so you will then want to learn about about SIFT and other techniques.

One of the nice places you can start looking for papers and algorithms is face-reg

Have fun learning :)


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