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The image foresting transform (IFT) is a graph-based approach to the design of image processing operators based on connectivity. It naturally leads to correct and efficient implementations and to a better understanding of how different operators relate to each other. We give here a precise definition of the IFT, and a procedure to compute it-a generalization of Dijkstra's algorithm-with a proof of correctness. We also discuss implementation issues and illustrate the use of the IFT in a few applications.