Filtering Abstract Senses From Image Search Results

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 22 (NIPS 2009)

Bibtex Metadata Paper


Kate Saenko, Trevor Darrell


We propose an unsupervised method that, given a word, automatically selects non-abstract senses of that word from an online ontology and generates images depicting the corresponding entities. When faced with the task of learning a visual model based only on the name of an object, a common approach is to find images on the web that are associated with the object name, and then train a visual classifier from the search result. As words are generally polysemous, this approach can lead to relatively noisy models if many examples due to outlier senses are added to the model. We argue that images associated with an abstract word sense should be excluded when training a visual classifier to learn a model of a physical object. While image clustering can group together visually coherent sets of returned images, it can be difficult to distinguish whether an image cluster relates to a desired object or to an abstract sense of the word. We propose a method that uses both image features and the text associated with the images to relate latent topics to particular senses. Our model does not require any human supervision, and takes as input only the name of an object category. We show results of retrieving concrete-sense images in two available multimodal, multi-sense databases, as well as experiment with object classifiers trained on concrete-sense images returned by our method for a set of ten common office objects.