A limitation of the estimation of intrinsic volumes via pixel configuration counts
- It is often helpful to compute the intrinsic volumes of a set of which only a pixel image is observed. A computational efficient approach, which is suggested by several authors and used in practice, is to approximate the intrinsic volumes by a linear functional of the pixel configuration histogram. Here we want to examine, whether there is an optimal way of choosing this linear functional, where we will use a quite natural optimality criterion that has already been applied successfully for the estimation of the surface area. We will see that for intrinsic volumes other than volume or surface area this optimality criterion cannot be used, since estimators which ignore the data and return constant values are optimal w.r.t. this criterion. This shows that one has to be very careful, when intrinsic volumes are approximated by a linear functional of the pixel configuration histogram.