The Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab (CSAIL) announced on July 25, 2013 that Professor William Freeman has been honored with the Test of Time Award for his paper "Orientation Histograms for Hand Gesture Recognition,” co-written by Michal Roth in 1995. The award was presented at the 2013 IEEE Automatic Face and Gesture Recognition Conference in Shanghai, China.
Freeman and Roth’s paper presents a new method to recognize hand gestures, based on a pattern recognition technique that employs histograms of local orientation.
The Test of Time Award is presented annually in recognition of an outstanding and influential paper that appeared at the IEEE Automatic Face and Gesture Recognition Conference in the past 15-20 years. Freeman and Roth were the recipients of the inaugural award.
Freeman is the Associate Department Head of the MIT Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and a principal investigator at CSAIL. His current research interests include machine learning applied to computer vision, Bayesian models of visual perception, and interactive applications of computer vision. In 1997, he received the Outstanding Paper prize at the Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition for work on applying bilinear models to "separating style and content". Previous research topics include steerable filters and pyramids, the generic viewpoint assumption, color constancy, and computer vision for computer games. He holds 15 patents.