Learning deep structured active contours end-to-end

    Abstract

    The world is covered with millions of buildings, and precisely knowing each instance’s position and extents is vital to a multitude of applications. Recently, automated building footprint segmentation models have shown superior detection accuracy thanks to the usage of Convolutional Neural Networks (CNN). However, even the latest evolutions struggle to precisely delineating borders, which often leads to geometric distortions and inadvertent fusion of adjacent building instances. We propose to overcome this issue by exploiting the distinct geometric properties of buildings. To this end, we present Deep Structured Active Contours (DSAC), a novel framework that integrates priors and constraints into the segmentation process, such as continuous boundaries, smooth edges, and sharp corners. To do so, DSAC employs Active Contour Models (ACM), a family of constraint- and prior-based polygonal models. We learn ACM parameterizations per instance using a CNN, and show how to incorporate all components in a structured output model, making DSAC trainable end-to-end. We evaluate DSAC on three challenging building instance segmentation datasets, where it compares favorably against state-of-the-art. Code will be made available.

    Authors

    Diego Marcos, Devis Tuia, Benjamin Kellenberger, Lisa Zhang, Min Bai, Renjie Liao, Raquel Urtasun

    Conference

    CVPR 2018

    Full Paper

    ‘Learning deep structured active contours end-to-end’ (PDF)

    Uber ATG

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    Min Bai
    Min Bai is a research scientist at Uber ATG Toronto. Before that, he was a wireless systems engineer at Apple. He has an undergraduate degree in electrical engineering from the University of Waterloo. His research interest includes various perception tasks such as segmentation, point cloud processing, online mapping.
    Renjie Liao
    Renjie Liao is a PhD student in Machine Learning Group, Department of Computer Science, University of Toronto, supervised by Prof. Raquel Urtasun and Prof. Richard Zemel. He is also a Research Scientist in Uber Advanced Technology Group Toronto. He is also affiliated with Vector Institute. He received M.Phil. degree from Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Chinese University of Hong Kong, under the supervision of Prof. Jiaya Jia. He got B.Eng. degree from School of Automation Science and Electrical Engineering in Beihang University (former Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics).
    Raquel Urtasun
    Raquel Urtasun is the Chief Scientist for Uber ATG and the Head of Uber ATG Toronto. She is also a Professor at the University of Toronto, a Canada Research Chair in Machine Learning and Computer Vision and a co-founder of the Vector Institute for AI. She is a recipient of an NSERC EWR Steacie Award, an NVIDIA Pioneers of AI Award, a Ministry of Education and Innovation Early Researcher Award, three Google Faculty Research Awards, an Amazon Faculty Research Award, a Connaught New Researcher Award, a Fallona Family Research Award and two Best Paper Runner up Prize awarded CVPR in 2013 and 2017. She was also named Chatelaine 2018 Woman of the year, and 2018 Toronto’s top influencers by Adweek magazine