Context Reasoning Attention Network for Image Super-Resolution
Deep convolutional neural networks (CNNs) are achieving great successes for image super-resolution (SR), where global context is crucial for accurate restoration. However, the basic convolutional layer in CNNs is designed to extract local patterns, lacking the ability to model global context. Many efforts have been devoted to augmenting SR networks with the global context information, especially by global feature interaction methods. These works incorporate the global context into local feature representation. However, recent advances in neuroscience show that it is necessary for the neurons to dynamically modulate their functions according to context, which is neglected in most CNN based SR methods. Motivated by those observations and analyses, we propose context reasoning attention network (CRAN) to adaptively modulate the convolution kernel according to the global context. Specifically, we extract global context descriptors, which are further enhanced with semantic reasoning. Channel and spatial interactions are then proposed to generate context reasoning attention mask, which is applied to modify the convolution kernel adaptively. Such a modulated convolution layer is utilized as basic component to build the network blocks and itself. Extensive experiments on benchmark datasets with multiple degradation models show that our CRAN achieves superior SR results and favourable efficiency trade-off.