International Journal of Computer Vision

, Volume 81, Issue 3, pp 317–330 | Cite as

Spectral Curvature Clustering (SCC)

  • Guangliang Chen
  • Gilad LermanEmail author
Open Access


This paper presents novel techniques for improving the performance of a multi-way spectral clustering framework (Govindu in Proceedings of the 2005 IEEE Computer Society Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR’05), vol. 1, pp. 1150–1157, 2005; Chen and Lerman, 2007, preprint in the supplementary webpage) for segmenting affine subspaces. Specifically, it suggests an iterative sampling procedure to improve the uniform sampling strategy, an automatic scheme of inferring the tuning parameter from the data, a precise initialization procedure for K-means, as well as a simple strategy for isolating outliers. The resulting algorithm, Spectral Curvature Clustering (SCC), requires only linear storage and takes linear running time in the size of the data. It is supported by theory which both justifies its successful performance and guides our practical choices. We compare it with other existing methods on a few artificial instances of affine subspaces. Application of the algorithm to several real-world problems is also discussed.


Hybrid linear modeling Multi-way spectral clustering Polar curvature Iterative sampling Motion segmentation Face clustering 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2008

Open AccessThis is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial License (, which permits any noncommercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author(s) and source are credited.

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of MathematicsUniversity of MinnesotaMinneapolisUSA

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