A Novel Three-Staged Generative Model for Skeletonizing Chinese Characters with Versatile Styles

Ye Chuan Tian, Song Hua Xu, Cheickna Sylla

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Skeletons of characters provide vital information to support a variety of tasks, e.g., optical character recognition, image restoration, stroke segmentation and extraction, and style learning and transfer. However, automatically skeletonizing Chinese characters poses a steep computational challenge due to the large volume of Chinese characters and their versatile styles, for which traditional image analysis approaches are error-prone and fragile. Current deep learning based approach requires a heavy amount of manual labeling efforts, which imposes serious limitations on the precision, robustness, scalability and generalizability of an algorithm to solve a specific problem. To tackle the above challenge, this paper introduces a novel three-staged deep generative model developed as an image-to-image translation approach, which significantly reduces the model’s demand for labeled training samples. The new model is built upon an improved G-net, an enhanced X-net, and a newly proposed F-net. As compellingly demonstrated by comprehensive experimental results, the new model is able to iteratively extract skeletons of Chinese characters in versatile styles with a high quality, which noticeably outperforms two state-of-the-art peer deep learning methods and a classical thinning algorithm in terms of F-measure, Hausdorff distance, and average Hausdorff distance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1250-1271
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Computer Science and Technology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics


  • X-net
  • skeletonization of characters
  • three-staged skeletonization


Dive into the research topics of 'A Novel Three-Staged Generative Model for Skeletonizing Chinese Characters with Versatile Styles'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this