EgoEnv: Human-centric environment representations from egocentric video

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 36 (NeurIPS 2023) Main Conference Track

Bibtex Paper Supplemental


Tushar Nagarajan, Santhosh Kumar Ramakrishnan, Ruta Desai, James Hillis, Kristen Grauman


First-person video highlights a camera-wearer's activities in the context of their persistent environment. However, current video understanding approaches reason over visual features from short video clips that are detached from the underlying physical space and capture only what is immediately visible. To facilitate human-centric environment understanding, we present an approach that links egocentric video and the environment by learning representations that are predictive of the camera-wearer's (potentially unseen) local surroundings. We train such models using videos from agents in simulated 3D environments where the environment is fully observable, and test them on human-captured real-world videos from unseen environments. On two human-centric video tasks, we show that models equipped with our environment-aware features consistently outperform their counterparts with traditional clip features. Moreover, despite being trained exclusively on simulated videos, our approach successfully handles real-world videos from HouseTours and Ego4D, and achieves state-of-the-art results on the Ego4D NLQ challenge.