FVision: A declarative language for visual tracking

John Peterson, Paul Hudak, Alastair Reid, Greg Hager

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

18 Scopus citations


Functional programming languages are not generally associated with computationally intensive tasks such as computer vision. We show that a declarative programming language like Haskell is effective for describing complex visual tracking systems. We have taken an existing C++ library for computer vision, called XVision, and used it to build FVision (pronounced “fission”), a library of Haskell types and functions that provides a high-level interface to the lower-level XVision code. Using functional abstractions, users of FVision can build and test new visual tracking systems rapidly and reliably. The use of Haskell does not degrade system performance: computations are dominated by low-level calculations expressed in C++ while the Haskell “glue code” has a negligible impact on performance. FVision is built using functional reactive programming (FRP) to express interaction in a purely functional manner. The resulting system demonstrates the viability of mixed-language programming: visual tracking programs continue to spend most of their time executing low-level image-processing code, while Haskell’s advanced features allow us to develop and test systems quickly and with confidence. In this paper, we demonstrate the use of Haskell and FRP to express many basic abstractions of visual tracking.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationPractical Aspects of Declarative Languages - 3rd International Symposium, PADL 2001, Proceedings
EditorsI.V. Ramakrishnan
PublisherSpringer Verlag
Number of pages18
ISBN (Print)9783540417682
StatePublished - 2001
Event3rd International Symposium on Practical Aspects of Declarative Languages, PADL 2001 - Las Vegas, United States
Duration: Mar 11 2001Mar 12 2001

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


Other3rd International Symposium on Practical Aspects of Declarative Languages, PADL 2001
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityLas Vegas

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Computer Science(all)


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