ARKTOS: A knowledge engineering software tool for images

Leen Kiat Soh, Costas Tsatsoulis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


The goal of our ARKTOS project is to build an intelligent knowledge-based system to classify satellite sea ice images. It involves acquiring knowledge from sea ice experts, quantifying such knowledge as computational entities and ultimately building an intelligent classifier. In this paper we describe a two-stage knowledge engineering approach that facilitates explicit knowledge transfer, converting implicit visual cues and cognition of the experts to explicit attributes and rules implemented by the engineers. First, there is a prototyping stage that involves interviewing sea ice experts, transcribing the sessions, identifying descriptors and rules, designing and implementing the knowledge and delivering the prototype. The objective of this stage is to obtain a modestly accurate classification system quickly. Second, there is a refinement stage that involves evaluating the prototype, refining the knowledge base, modifying the design and re-evaluating the improved system. Since the refinement is evaluation-driven, the experts and the engineers are motivated explicitly to improve the knowledge base and are able to communicate with each other using a common, consistent platform. Moreover, since the classification result is immediately available, both sides are able to efficiently assess the correctness of the system. To facilitate the knowledge engineering of the second stage, we have designed and built three Java-based graphical user interfaces: arktosGUI, arktosViewer and arktosEditor. arktosGUI concentrates on feature-based refinement of specific attributes and rules. arktosViewer deals with regional evaluation. arktosEditor has a rule indexing and search mechanism and knowledge base editing capabilities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)469-496
Number of pages28
JournalInternational Journal of Human Computer Studies
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2002


  • Evaluation-driven refinement
  • Intelligent image classification
  • Knowledge engineering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Education
  • General Engineering
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Hardware and Architecture


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