people counting - how do i detect people?

i plan to do this using video surveilance from the top view.. my problem now is how to detect people.
Self organizing maps is an option however it introduces a problem when the people passing are in caps...because now, i can't define the color of the head...there are endless possibilities.
my next option is thru the shape...however i am unfamiliar with algorithms for this..
any suggestions?

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  • : i plan to do this using video surveilance from the top view.. my problem now is how to detect people.
    : Self organizing maps is an option however it introduces a problem when the people passing are in caps...because now, i can't define the color of the head...there are endless possibilities.
    : my next option is thru the shape...however i am unfamiliar with algorithms for this..
    : any suggestions?
    :

    Make them walk through a narrow space and use an invisible beam like those on lift doors, linked to a computer instead. Just an idea though....

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