Uncertainty-Aware Learning for Zero-Shot Semantic Segmentation

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 33 (NeurIPS 2020)

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Ping Hu, Stan Sclaroff, Kate Saenko


<p>Zero-shot semantic segmentation (ZSS) aims to classify pixels of novel classes without training examples available. Recently, most ZSS methods focus on learning the visual-semantic correspondence to transfer knowledge from seen classes to unseen classes at the pixel level. Yet, few works study the adverse effects caused by the noisy and outlying training samples in the seen classes. In this paper, we identify this challenge and address it with a novel framework that learns to discriminate noisy samples based on Bayesian uncertainty estimation. Specifically, we model the network outputs with Gaussian and Laplacian distributions, with the variances accounting for the observation noise as well as the uncertainty of input samples. Learning objectives are then derived with the estimated variances playing as adaptive attenuation for individual samples in training. Consequently, our model learns more attentively from representative samples of seen classes while suffering less from noisy and outlying ones, thus providing better reliability and generalization toward unseen categories. We demonstrate the effectiveness of our framework through comprehensive experiments on multiple challenging benchmarks, and show that our method achieves significant accuracy improvement over previous approaches for large open-set segmentation.</p>