MapNet: An Allocentric Spatial Memory for Mapping Environments

João F. Henriques, Andrea Vedaldi; Proceedings of the IEEE Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR), 2018, pp. 8476-8484


Autonomous agents need to reason about the world beyond their instantaneous sensory input. Integrating information over time, however, requires switching from an egocentric representation of a scene to an allocentric one, expressed in the world reference frame. It must also be possible to update the representation dynamically, which requires localizing and registering the sensor with respect to it. In this paper, we develop a differentiable module that satisfies such requirements, while being robust, efficient, and suitable for integration in end-to-end deep networks. The module contains an allocentric spatial memory that can be accessed associatively by feeding to it the current sensory input, resulting in localization, and then updated using an LSTM or similar mechanism. We formulate efficient localization and registration of sensory information as a dual pair of convolution/deconvolution operators in memory space. The map itself is a 2.5D representation of an environment storing information that a deep neural network module learns to distill from RGBD input. The result is a map that contains multi-task information, different from classical approaches to mapping such as structure-from-motion. We present results using synthetic mazes, a dataset of hours of recorded gameplay of the classic game Doom, and the very recent Active Vision Dataset of real images captured from a robot.

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author = {Henriques, João F. and Vedaldi, Andrea},
title = {MapNet: An Allocentric Spatial Memory for Mapping Environments},
booktitle = {Proceedings of the IEEE Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR)},
month = {June},
year = {2018}