Glance-and-Gaze Vision Transformer

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 34 pre-proceedings (NeurIPS 2021)

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Authors

Qihang Yu, Yingda Xia, Yutong Bai, Yongyi Lu, Alan L. Yuille, Wei Shen

Abstract

Recently, there emerges a series of vision Transformers, which show superior performance with a more compact model size than conventional convolutional neural networks, thanks to the strong ability of Transformers to model long-range dependencies. However, the advantages of vision Transformers also come with a price: Self-attention, the core part of Transformer, has a quadratic complexity to the input sequence length. This leads to a dramatic increase of computation and memory cost with the increase of sequence length, thus introducing difficulties when applying Transformers to the vision tasks that require dense predictions based on high-resolution feature maps.In this paper, we propose a new vision Transformer, named Glance-and-Gaze Transformer (GG-Transformer), to address the aforementioned issues. It is motivated by the Glance and Gaze behavior of human beings when recognizing objects in natural scenes, with the ability to efficiently model both long-range dependencies and local context. In GG-Transformer, the Glance and Gaze behavior is realized by two parallel branches: The Glance branch is achieved by performing self-attention on the adaptively-dilated partitions of the input, which leads to a linear complexity while still enjoying a global receptive field; The Gaze branch is implemented by a simple depth-wise convolutional layer, which compensates local image context to the features obtained by the Glance mechanism. We empirically demonstrate our method achieves consistently superior performance over previous state-of-the-art Transformers on various vision tasks and benchmarks.