Discrimination-Aware Mechanism for Fine-Grained Representation Learning
Recently, with the emergence of retrieval requirements for certain individual in the same superclass, e.g., birds, persons, cars, fine-grained recognition task has attracted a significant amount of attention from academia and industry. In fine-grained recognition scenario, the inter-class differences are quite diverse and subtle, which makes it challenging to extract all the discriminative cues. Traditional training mechanism optimizes the overall discriminativeness of the whole feature. It may stop early when some feature elements has been trained to distinguish training samples well, leaving other elements insufficiently trained for a feature. This would result in a less generalizable feature extractor that only captures major discriminative cues and ignores subtle ones. Therefore, there is a need for a training mechanism that enforces the discriminativeness of all the elements in the feature to capture more the subtle visual cues. In this paper, we propose a Discrimination-Aware Mechanism (DAM) that iteratively identifies insufficiently trained elements and improves them. DAM is able to increase the number of well learned elements, which captures more visual cues by the feature extractor. In this way, a more informative representation is learned, which brings better generalization performance. We show that DAM can be easily applied to both proxy-based and pair-based loss functions, and thus can be used in most existing fine-grained recognition paradigms. Comprehensive experiments on CUB-200-2011, Cars196, Market-1501, and MSMT17 datasets demonstrate the advantages of our DAM based loss over the related state-of-the-art approaches.