Code covered by the BSD License  

Highlights from

image thumbnail



Matt Fig (view profile)


04 May 2009 (Updated )

Finds one matrix (a sub-matrix) within another.

function [idx,idx2] = findsubmat(A,B)
% FINDSUBMAT find one matrix (a submatrix) inside another.
% IDX = FINDSUBMAT(A,B) looks for and returns the linear index of the
% location of matrix B within matrix A.  The index IDX corresponds to the
% location of the first element of matrix B within matrix A.
% [R,C] = FINDSUBMAT(A,B) returns the row and column instead.
%         A = magic(12);
%         B = [81 63;52 94];
%         [r,c]= findsubmat(A,B)
%         % Now to verify:
%         A(r:(r+size(B,1)-1),c:(c+size(B,2)-1))==B
%         A = [Inf NaN -Inf 3 4; 2 3 NaN 6 7; 5 6 3 1 6];
%         B = [Inf NaN -Inf;2 3 NaN];
%         findsubmat(single(A),single(B))
% Note:  The interested or concerned user who wants to know how NaNs are 
% handled should see the extensive comment block in the code.  
% See also find, findstr, strfind
% Author:   Matt Fig with improvements by others (See comments)
% Contact:
% Date:     3/31/2009
% Updated:  5/5/2209 to allow for NaNs in B, as per Urs S. suggestion. 
%                    Also to return [] if B is empty.
%           6/12/2009 Introduce another algorithm for larger B matrices.

if nargin < 2
    error('Two inputs are required.  See help.')

[rA,cA] = size(A);  % Get the sizes of the inputs. First the larger matrix.
[rB,cB] = size(B);  % The smaller matrix.
tflag = false; % In case we need to transpose.

if ndims(A)~=2 || ndims(B)~=2 || rA<rB || cA<cB
    error('Only 2D arrays are allowed.  B must be smaller than A.')
elseif isempty(B)
    idx = [];  % This should be an obvious situation.
    idx2 = [];
elseif rA==rB && cA==cB  % User is wasting time, annoy him with a disp().
    disp(['FINDSUBMAT is not recommended for equality determination, ',...
          'instead use:  isequal(A,B)']);
    idx = [];
    idx2 = [];
    if all(A(:)==B(:))
        idx = 1;
        idx2 = 1;
elseif rB==1 && cB==1  % User is wasting time, annoy him with a disp().
    disp(['FINDSUBMAT is not recommended for finding scalars, ',...
          'instead use:  find(A==B)']);
    if nargout==2
        [idx,idx2] = find(A==B);
        idx = find(A==B);

if cB > ceil(1.5*rB)
    A = A.';  % In this case it may be faster to transpose.
    B = B.';  % The 1.5 cutoff is based on several trial runs.
    [rA,cA] = size(A);  % Get the sizes of the inputs transposed.
    [rB,cB] = size(B);
    tflag = true; % For the correct output at the end.

nans = isnan(B(:));  % If B has NaNs, user expects to find match in A.

if any(nans)
    % There are at least two strategies for dealing with NaNs here.  One 
    % approach is to pick the largest finite number N between B and A,
    % then replace the NaNs in both matrices with (N + 1).  This has the
    % advantage of certainty when it comes to uniqueness.  Unfortunately,
    % this is slow for large problems.  The other approach is to assign the
    % NaNs in A and B to an 'unlikely' number.  This is much faster, but 
    % also has the risk of duplicating other elements in A or B and thereby
    % giving false results.  The odds against a conflict can be minimized
    % by choosing the unlikely number with some care.  First, the number
    % should not be on [0 1] because this is a very common range, often
    % encountered when working with: images, matrices derived using rand,
    % and normalized data.  Second, the number should not be an integer or
    % an explicit ratio of integers (3/5, 45673/2344), for obvious reasons.
    % Third, in this case we want the number to be a function of rand.  The
    % reason is that for very large problems, the first method above takes
    % up to 20+ times longer than the unlikely number method.  Thus if a
    % user is paranoid about trusting the output when using this method, 
    % even with all of the above precautions and exclusions, it will 
    % still be much faster to run the code twice and compare answers than 
    % to run the code once using the first method, with a few exceptions.
    % I have chosen speed over certainty, but also include the alternate 
    % method for convenience.  To switch to the first approach, uncomment 
    % the first line and comment out the second line below.
%     vct = max([B(isfinite(B(:)))',Atv(isfinite(Atv))]) + 1; % Certainty.
    vct = pi^pi -1/pi + 1/rand; % Unlikely number on [37.14...   9.0...e15]
    B(nans) = vct;  % Set the NaNs in both to vct.
    A(isnan(A)) = vct;
    clear nans  % This could be a large vector, save some memory.

if numel(B)<30  % The below method is faster for most small B matrices.
    A = A(:).';  % Make a single row vector for strfind
    vct = strfind(A,B(:,1).');  % Find occurrences of the first col of B.
    % Next eliminate wrap-arounds, this was much improved by Bruno Luong.
    idx = vct(mod(vct-1,rA) <= rA-rB);
    cnt = 2;  % Counter for the while loop.

    while ~isempty(idx) && cnt<=cB
        vct = strfind(A,B(:,cnt).');  % Look for successive columns.
        % The C helper function ismembc needs both args to be sorted.
        % Search the code in ismember for more information.
        idx = idx(ismembc(idx + (cnt-1)*rA,vct)); % Matches with previous?
        cnt = cnt+1;  % Increment counter.
else % The below method is faster for most larger B matrices.
    idx = strfind(A(:).',B(:,1).');  % Occurrences of the first col of B.
    % Next eliminate wrap-arounds, this was much improved by Bruno Luong.
    idx = idx(mod(idx-1,rA) <= rA-rB);
    idx(idx>((cA-cB+1)*rA)) = []; % Too close to right edge.
    cnt = 2;  % Counter for the while loop.
    flag = true(1,length(idx));
    % Siyi Deng noticed that for large B, the previous algorithm was slow.
    % The code below reflects an account for this behavior.
    while cnt<=cB
        TMP = rA*(cnt-1);  % Just to make the cond below more intelligible.
        TMP2 = B(:,cnt)';
        for jj = 1:length(idx)
            if ~isequal(A(idx(jj)+TMP : idx(jj)+rB-1+TMP),TMP2)
                flag(jj) = false;
        cnt = cnt+1;  % Increment counter.

    idx = idx(flag);

if tflag  % We must get the index to A from index to A'
    tmp = rem(idx-1,rA) + 1;  % A temporary variable.
    idx = 1 + (idx - tmp)/rA + (tmp - 1)*cA;
    rA = cA;  % Only used if user wants subscripts instead of Linear Index.

if nargout==2 % Get subscripts.
    tmp = rem(idx-1,rA) + 1; 
    idx2 = (idx - tmp)/rA + 1;
    idx = tmp;                        

Contact us