Introduction

The overall goal of pattern recognition is to develop systems that can distinguish and classify objects. The range of possible objects is vast. Objects can be physical things existing in the real world, like banknotes, as well as non-material entities, e.g., e-mails, or abstract concepts such as actions or situations. The objects can be of natural origin or artificially created. Examples of objects in pattern recognition tasks are shown in Figure 1.

On the basis of recorded patterns, the task is to classify the objects into previously assigned classes by defining and extracting suitable features. The type as well as the number of classes is given by the classification task. For example, banknotes (see Figure 1b) could be classified ...

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