Breaking NEWz you can UzE...
compiled by Jon Stimac
FBI Using Pigs to Practice
Express News, San Antonio
- Feb 28,
..."Pig skin is the closest to human skin," forensic examiner M.K.
Pritchard said. ...
Software Helps Build Accurate Fingerprint Images
- Dec 31, 2007
...combine the most in-focus regions from a series of partially
focused fingerprint images taken at different focal lengths...
Suspect Denied Bail –
Fall River, MA, -
Mar 6, 2008
...police were able to match a bloody fingerprint on one of the [eye
More Than a Few Loose Ends
The Phoenix.com, MA
- Mar 5, 2008
cancer that was growing within the Boston Police Department will be
Recent CLPEX Posting Activity
containing new posts
Moderated by Steve Everist
Announcement: Click link any time for recent, relevant fingerprint
clpexco 1590 16 Dec 2007 03:36 pm
KEPT - Keeping Examiners Prepared for Testimony
clpexco 1459 09 Mar 2008 08:40 pm
SPR Processing Question
printlady 114 09 Mar 2008 07:05 pm
Fingerprint Society Conference 2008
Taggart 741 09 Mar 2008 06:34 pm
Evidence Fabrication in South Africa
Pat A. Wertheim 14352 09 Mar 2008 12:45 pm
Lonnette Kendoll 322 07 Mar 2008 10:22 pm
Error Rate Paper
g. 75 07 Mar 2008 05:20 pm
Calls for Inquiry to be scrapped
Daktari 17252 07 Mar 2008 05:18 pm
Finding the Best Input Resolution for Printers
Steve Everist 281 07 Mar 2008 07:27 am
Charles Parker 262 04 Mar 2008 07:02 pm
UPDATES ON CLPEX.com
No FIG update this week due to technical difficulties in
re-hosting CLPEX.com to new servers. I
hope to have this issue resolved next week, but it may be longer. On
the bright side, the forum has been migrated and is operating normally!
Inserted KEPT #10- the Analysis Phase of ACE-V: Discuss this topic on CLPEX.com - a discussion has
been created for KEPT.
I have accepted a new position in the Concepts and Technology branch of the
DoD Biometrics Task Force. Although I have enjoyed standing up and
managing operations divisions for DoD Examination Services, these units are
operating efficiently and I feel it is a great time to move toward the tip
of the spear into research and development to support the methods and
capabilities of tomorrow. There are exciting projects in the works and
I consider it a privilege to transition into the management and support DoD
strategic initiatives and latent print related
Cully Stimson brought us an excellent article
regarding the success of the fingerprint discipline.
we look at a CLPEX.com
forum discussion on the best resolution to use for printing latent
We also look at new R&D opportunities within the Department of Defense.
Finding the Best Input Resolution for Printers
Posted: 03 Mar 2008 02:47 pm Post subject: Finding the Best Input Resolution
I stumbled across the website below while searching for information
concerning the best resolution input (ppi) relative to a printer's rated
This has become an issue as many offices have switched over to digital
capture of their latent prints, and evidence in general. A common question
seems to be, "What is the best printer for printing out 1000 ppi latent
prints at 1:1?" With the current crop of printers, this just isn't going to
happen. Although printers advertise outputs in excess of 1440/2880/etc...
dpi, they aren't able to resolve, with the eight or nine inks available to
them, the color and clarity of an image containing as many as 16.7 million
colors with a resolution of 1000 ppi or greater.
So the issue to consider is what resolution at input creates the the most
accurate output from your printer. I've heard different ways of figuring
this, including elaborate math problems with length and width dpi of the
printer and the square root. I think the solution is more simple than this
after using these test images with our Epson 2200.
I printed both of the images (one vertical lines and one horizontal) on our
Epson, using the same printer quality settings that I use for printing out
high resolution images. And it turns out that 180 ppi and 360 ppi seem to be
the best. I would guess that 720 would also be good, but the printer doesn't
appear to be able to resolve this level of detail as the lines are too fine
to see that they're lines. The Epson 2200 lists an output of 1440x2880 dpi
and both 180 and 360 are divisible into both numbers (as is 720). The
clarity of the lines at 180 ppi are actually better than those at 200, 240,
260, etc... until you reach 360.
So if you'd like to test your printer to see which input resolutions seem to
hit the sweet spot, go to http://www.inkjetart.com/tips/ppi/ and download
the two PDF files. Remember when printing to not use the "fit to margins"
setting, otherwise it will modify the image for printing. Also use the
settings and paper that you use for high quality prints.
I think the diagonal lines are very telling. With the Epson 2200 at 480 ppi
input, there's a block pattern created that was very interesting to say the
Posted: 03 Mar 2008 03:34 pm Post subject:
I found one guy who did extensive testing of the 2200 and found 288 ppi to
be optimal. http://www.rags-int-inc.com/PhotoTechStuff/Epson2200/
Good discussion, too, and a good starting place for those setting out to
analyze their own hardware.
Posted: 03 Mar 2008 03:59 pm Post subject:
Thanks for that link Gerald!
It looks like my understanding was on the right track, but I failed to
consider multiples of 5 and 10 (288 and 144). I went straight to considering
numbers that represented halves 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, and 1/16.
Unfortunately the person who created the PDF files in my original link
didn't think to include them either. It is odd that a multiple of 5 would be
where he found his best resolution with a 4x24 cartridge.
I'm wondering if the banding effect has something to do with overlap of the
cartridge nozzles or even a flaw in his printer.
I'm in the process of getting his images to print and look at. Unfortunately
they aren't the same as those in PDF test sheet that I posted in my first
Posted: 03 Mar 2008 07:21 pm Post subject:
That's another question, and I don't know enough about the printer hardware
to know if there's any loss of precision as it ages and wears or even from
changes in the dot nozzles. I would expect native conflicts between pixels
and head configuration to present regular banding across the image and maybe
aging defects to produce isolated bands.
From what I can tell of the mechanisms, it always looks to me like they
would be subject to all sorts of problems of wear and environmental crud.
Posted: 03 Mar 2008 07:35 pm Post subject:
I printed out the image from your link at 288 and also ran into the banding
of the dots in both the 288ppi and 144ppi grids.
I then converted it (no resampling) to 360ppi and the one that was
considered 144ppi (assuming it converted to 180) looked better than the
original, and there was no banding evident. The dots from the higher
resolution grid (288 - 360) aren't as clear, although there is no banding as
there was when printed out in the 288ppi configuration.
The text was clearer at 360 than at 288 also. with the 288ppi image showing
a yellow fringing that wasn't visible in the 360ppi version. As far as the
photograph portion of the image, I'm not seeing anything that sends me
really one way or another. Since it wasn't resampled, the physical size at
360ppi has been reduced. This does appear to give it the perception of
increased sharpness, but it may be mostly a difference in the physical size.
Posted: 06 Mar 2008 06:59 pm Post subject:
Your initial post on this topic, Steve, really has two parts to it - the
scanning resolution; and the printing resolution.
I have never been a proponent of the 1000 PPI "standard" and find many
reasons to consider other resolutions. One issue is that many scanners have
to resample to scan at 1000 PPI - scanners generally don't have a
continually variable resolution, so when setting a scanning rate that is not
an even factor of the maximum optical resolution, there is a good
possibility that the scanner is resampling the image. There are other issues
involved, such as then corresponding the scanning resolution with the
printing resolution, and an implication that sub-1000 PPI settings are
somehow unusable, etc.
Another issue is the whole concept of printing latents 1:1. I have never had
to do this in my career. I began using digital imaging with latent prints in
1992, and I've spent a lot of time helping agencies do this, but still
haven't seen anyone with a good reason for doing so. Potentially, the
original latent has the most information. Then, the digital file is next.
The printed image is never going to equal the image quality on one's screen.
And, why would want a tiny, little print anyway?
But, your main topic is printing, and it's great to see your post on this
topic. It is unfortunate that printing is such a complex issue. I've seen so
much bad information out there that it's hard to sort out the good stuff.
Then, some police IT departments won't load the proper printing profiles for
printers, so the analysts who do the printing are per-ordained to get bad
Anyway, good discussion. I tested my printer when I got it several years ago
and find that I get excellent quality with good sharpness at 240 PPI, and a
little more sharpness at the cost of color fidelity at 360 PPI (this is on
my Epson 1280 - yes, I am overdue for an upgrade - I plan to convert this to
a grayscale printer using four shades of black/gray inks eventually).
Posted: 06 Mar 2008 07:14 pm Post subject:
I'm glad you weighed in on this topic. I was just about to email you
regarding another issue relative to scanning lift cards that have been
processed with silver powder.
I agree with your thoughts about the 1000ppi issue. I usually scan at
2400ppi as it's the highest native resolution of our scanners. It's not
always needed, but I'd rather have more and need less than vice versa. The
Hayden case, which most digital imaging courses reference, was much less
For some reason, after the SWG's included 1000ppi in their guidelines, it
became a target to reach instead of a sort of theoretical safety net. I even
remember being taught about how to get your camera/lens to capture an image
as close to 1000ppi as possible, and then being told to mark on the lens
that spot so that all photos could be captured as close to 1000ppi as
possible. I'm glad the current trend is to just train to 'fill the frame.'
Posted: 06 Mar 2008 09:22 pm Post subject:
Great discussion. This may solve the problem with one of our printers
putting out crap.
In discussing this and other issues today, we were told that if you scan a
latent print in it is best to put it in the center of the scanning glass
instead of the corner. And if you are having problems with a light print
that you cover it with a gray sheet instead of using the normal white
backing of the scanner lid.
I can rember using that concept on some photography years ago but it has
slipped from my mind.
I have to try out everyones suggestions.
I like this kind of thread----keep it up.
Posted: 07 Mar 2008 07:27 am Post subject:
Here's another useful chart to calibrate your printer:
Biometric Collection, Analysis, Fusion and Transmission Technology
GENERAL INFORMATION - SPECIAL NOTICE
Solicitation Number: USA-SNOTE-080303-001
Posted Date: Mar 03, 2008
Original Archive Date: Jun 01, 2008
Current Archive Date: Jun 01, 2008
Naics Code: 334119 -- Other Computer Peripheral Equipment Manufacturing
Contracting Office Address
RDECOM Acquisition Center - Research Triangle Park, ATTN: AMSSB-ACR,
Research Triangle Park Contracting Division,
P.O. Box 12211, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-2211
Military applications of biometric exploitation to date have largely focused
on the use of fingerprints to identify personnel for entry into controlled
areas. Biometrics has an expanded role in military operations such as combat
identification (friend, foe, or neutral); offensive operations (intelligence
support to targeting); force protection (base access); detention operations;
civil-military operations (track target members of a population); and
personnel recovery and identification. In addition, biometrics can be
utilized to improve business functions such as physical and logical access
controls and privilege management applications like health care benefits,
finance, and time reporting.
U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL) is currently seeking proposals through
its Broad Agency Announcement W911NF-07-R-0001, Topic 2.63, added via
Amendment 1, found at
to develop and transition new methodologies, tools, technologies and
techniques that advance the state-of-the-art across the spectrum of the
biometrics infrastructure to provide users with new and enhanced
capabilities. ARL solicits proposals focusing on the development and
demonstration of functional models and the assessment of biometric
functionality across any of the Focus Areas described below. Demonstrations
and assessments will be performed in coordination with the Department of
Defense (DoD) Biometrics Task Force. Results should include technical
performance measurements and analysis from actual testbeds and laboratory
Research Concentration Areas: In order to address these challenges, the U.S.
Army Research Laboratory (ARL), on behalf of the DoD Biometrics Task Force,
is soliciting proposals in the following areas. These are suggestive of
topic areas that will enable future DoD systems to move toward full
spectrum, biometric capabilities. They are not in priority order and are
meant to stimulate ideas for perspective proposals. Other novel and creative
solutions are strongly encouraged.
a. Ability to sense and collect biometric
b. Ability to enhance biometric data
c. Application and processing algorithms
d. Biometrics and all sources data fusion
e. Biometrics database and communications architectures
Proposals must show, and will be expected to deliver, a functional model
package that will include usable hardware/software methodologies, models
archetypes, and/or tools that can be tested and incorporated into DoD R&D
programs. An open framework environment will be provided by ARL where tools
and products may be deployed and allowed to interact in real-time,
interactive, evolutionary and interdependent means, allowing rigorous
testing of new technologies, methodologies and theories in support of the
DoD Biometrics Task Force.
While Topic 2.63 will remain open throughout the period covered by BAA
W911NF-07-R-0001, funding is currently available under this topic for up to
ten procurement contract awards. The funding level for these awards is not
anticipated to exceed $750,000/year per award. To be considered for this
year's funding, white papers in accordance with PART III - SECTIONS 3-4 of
the ARL BAA must be received by 21 March 2008. Each white paper must be
submitted with a single PowerPoint chart, in landscape mode, divided into
four equal quadrants. The upper left quadrant shall contain a graphic
representing the approach or product described in the white paper. The lower
left quadrant shall contain a brief description of the approach and the
expected product described in the white paper. The upper right quadrant
shall contain a brief description of the approach and the expected product
described in the white paper. The lower right quadrant shall contain an
estimate of the proposed cost for each major milestone described in the
white paper. Use no smaller than 18 point Arial font. This chart will not
count against the white paper page count.
In approximately 2-3 weeks after receipt of white papers, offerors
submitting proposals of interest to ARL will receive an invitation to submit
a complete proposal in accordance with PART III - SECTIONS 5-6 of the ARL
BAA. Complete proposals will be due approximately 3-4 weeks from issuance of
the invitation letter.
The proposed schedule for initial proposals/awards is:
White papers due: 21 March 20 08
Proposal Invitations: 15 April 2008
Proposals Due: 9 May 2008
Awards: 10 July 2008
Demonstrations and assessments will be performed in coordination with the
DoD Biometrics Task Force. Results are to include technical performance
measurements and analysis from actual testbeds and laboratory environments
that indicate the effectiveness of the technology to advance the
state-of-the art in current biometrics capabilities across and/or within the
five (5) Focus Areas.
a. Collection Systems: The ability to sense and collect biometric data is
critical to the overall biometrics process. The Collection Systems Focus
Area includes the capability to obtain biometric data as well as all related
biographical and/or situational data. Below are some examples of possible
collection system challenges that could be addressed:
• Multi-modal biometrics data capture from both cooperative/noncooperative
• Lighter, portable/handheld, tactically robust sensor systems
• Day/night and/or active/passive acquisition of biometrics data
• Ease of use/Human Factors Design
b. Sub-Optimal Data Enhancement: An increasing amount of biometric
information is collected in less-than-ideal conditions, either due to the
environment, mission, or the subject. These conditions are created due to
limitations in collection systems or faults with the original sample and can
lead to poor data quality which may limit the sample’s usefulness with
current storage and search capabilities. The ability to enhance this
sub-optimal biometric data will provide users with more flexibility in the
collection and improved identity analysis of biometric data. Below are
examples of possible sub-optimal data enhancement challenges that could be
• Signal and image processing of sub-optimal data sets from both
• Expert systems (calibration for unsupervised processing)
c. Next Generation Algorithms: Algorithms play a critical role throughout
the biometric process. As the environment changes and new requirements are
identified, the algorithms, which carry out the computations throughout the
biometrics process, must be updated to match the need. In addition, several
algorithms currently in use are proprietary, making it difficult to compare
performance across various approaches. The intent for next generation
algorithms is to meet the changing need and develop a product that can be
shared across the DoD and the federal government. Below are examples of
possible next generation algorithm challenges that could be addressed:
• Detection, segmentation, matching, and quality
• Adaptive algorithms focused on newly developed sensors and sensor
• Post-capture processing algorithms for existing data (non-cooperative)
• DoD owned/developed algorithms for existing data (e.g., iris, fingerprint,
• Robust algorithms three-dimensional modeling to improve face recognition
for difficult images and techniques to accommodate human attributes (e.g.
face aging, weight gain/loss)
• Algorithms that execute on many processor architectures, embedded/small
d. Biometrics Data Fusion: Traditional biometric systems focus on the use of
a single biometric modality (e.g., fingerprint) for the verification and
identification of individuals. However, relying on only a single modality
limits the matching accuracy and the capability of analysts. Future
biometric technologies must be able to combine multiple biometric modalities
and other non-biometric data to allow for improved matching and more robust
identity analysis. Below are examples of possible biometrics data fusion
challenges that could be addressed:
• Feature, score, decision-level algorithms for data fusion
• Mission-specific data presentation
• Contextual data fusion with biometric data
• Standardization of training samples and data formats
• Tagging, Tracking, and Locating link analysis (information or entity level
e. Biometrics Architecture: The use of biometrics as an enabling technology
requires the support of a complex architecture that must be updated
continuously to meet emerging requirements. This focus area includes those
topics not addressed in the previous focus areas. Some of the topics in this
focus area are addressed by providing new approaches or methods to assess
performance rather than a technology solution. Below are examples of
possible biometrics architecture challenges that could be addressed:
• Processor/communications and data storage trade-off analysis
• Modeling and simulation
• Security architecture
• Movement and management of data
Point of Contact
Dr. Keith Aliberti, firstname.lastname@example.org, (301)-394-2320.
Keeping Examiners Prepared for Testimony - #10
Analysis phase of ACE-V
by Michele Triplett, King County
Disclaimer: The intent
of this is to provide thought provoking discussion. No claims of accuracy
Question – Analysis Phase:
Can you explain the Analysis phase of ACE-V?
I’m looking for sufficiency, to see if there’s enough for me to work
I’m looking to see how much level 1 detail, level 2 detail, and level
3 detail exists and I determine if there’s enough for me to move on to the
I’m collecting information which includes orientation, direction,
ridge flow, pattern type, ridge color, clarity (contrast level, distortional
The analysis phase can be described in a variety of
ways. My initial thought is that it’s not really important how you describe
it, but the truth is that if several people are testifying in the same case
(which is happening more and more every day) and they describe anything
differently then it appears as though there’s not a uniform method. The
difference in explaining something could also make it appear that one of the
practitioners isn’t as knowledgeable as they should be. To insure this
isn’t the interpretation left in court we do need to have similar
Answer a: This isn’t a bad answer but it really
doesn’t describe the analysis stage. I think it describes a pre-analysis
stage or a quick assessment of what may be on a lift card.
Answer b: This isn’t a bad answer either but it
brings in a lot of terms that the court may not be familiar with. Using an
answer like this may result in you having to do a lot more explaining than
Answer c: This is a simple answer that can
easily fit into most agencies use of the analysis phase. It states ‘what’
you’re doing (collecting information) without stating ‘how’ it should be
done. This would fit agencies that print pictures of a latent print and
mark the level 2 details and it would also fit agencies that just do a
visual inspection. This conclusion also conforms to the scientific method
of hypothesis testing (where the first stage is to collect data).
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