Reinforcement Learning for Visual Object Detection

Stefan Mathe, Aleksis Pirinen, Cristian Sminchisescu; Proceedings of the IEEE Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR), 2016, pp. 2894-2902


One of the most widely used strategies for visual object detection is based on exhaustive spatial hypothesis search. While methods like sliding windows have been successful and effective for many years, they are still brute-force, independent of the image content and the visual category being searched. In this paper we present formally rigorous sequential models that accumulate evidence collected at a small set of image locations in order to detect visual objects effectively. By formulating sequential search as reinforcement learning of the search policy (including the stopping condition), our fully trainable model can explicitly balance for each class, specifically, the conflicting goals of exploration -- sampling more image regions for better accuracy --, and exploitation -- stopping the search efficiently when sufficiently confident in the target's location. The methodology is general and applicable to any detector response function. We report encouraging results in the PASCAL VOC 2012 object detection test set showing that the proposed methodology achieves almost two orders of magnitude speed-up over sliding window methods.

Related Material

author = {Mathe, Stefan and Pirinen, Aleksis and Sminchisescu, Cristian},
title = {Reinforcement Learning for Visual Object Detection},
booktitle = {Proceedings of the IEEE Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR)},
month = {June},
year = {2016}