Priming Neural Networks

Amir Rosenfeld, Mahdi Biparva, John K. Tsotsos; Proceedings of the IEEE Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR) Workshops, 2018, pp. 2011-2020


Visual priming is known to affect the human visual system to allow detection of scene elements, even those that may have been near unnoticeable before, such as the presence of camouflaged animals. This process has been shown to be an effect of top-down signaling in the visual system triggered by the said cue. In this paper, we propose a mechanism to mimic the process of priming in the context of object detection and segmentation. We view priming as having a modulatory, cue dependent effect on layers of features within a network. Our results show how such a process can be complementary to, and at times more effective than simple post-processing applied to the output of the network, notably so in cases where the object is hard to detect such as in severe noise, small size or atypical appearance. Moreover, we find the effects of priming are sometimes stronger when early visual layers are affected. Overall, our experiments confirm that top-down signals can go a long way in improving object detection and segmentation.

Related Material

[pdf] [arXiv]
author = {Rosenfeld, Amir and Biparva, Mahdi and Tsotsos, John K.},
title = {Priming Neural Networks},
booktitle = {Proceedings of the IEEE Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR) Workshops},
month = {June},
year = {2018}