Image segmentation algorithms often depend on appearance models that characterize the distribution of pixel values in different image regions. We describe a new approach for estimating appearance models directly from an image, without explicit consideration of the pixels that make up each region. Our approach is based on novel algebraic expressions that relate local image statistics to the appearance of spatially coherent regions. We describe two algorithms that can use the aforementioned algebraic expressions to estimate appearance models directly from an image. The first algorithm solves a system of linear and quadratic equations using a least squares formulation. The second algorithm is a spectral method based on an eigenvector computation. We present experimental results that demonstrate the proposed methods work well in practice and lead to effective image segmentation algorithms.

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ACM/IEEE第23届模型驱动工程语言和系统国际会议,是模型驱动软件和系统工程的首要会议系列,由ACM-SIGSOFT和IEEE-TCSE支持组织。自1998年以来,模型涵盖了建模的各个方面,从语言和方法到工具和应用程序。模特的参加者来自不同的背景,包括研究人员、学者、工程师和工业专业人士。MODELS 2019是一个论坛,参与者可以围绕建模和模型驱动的软件和系统交流前沿研究成果和创新实践经验。今年的版本将为建模社区提供进一步推进建模基础的机会,并在网络物理系统、嵌入式系统、社会技术系统、云计算、大数据、机器学习、安全、开源等新兴领域提出建模的创新应用以及可持续性。 官网链接:http://www.modelsconference.org/

We propose a method that efficiently learns distributions over articulation model parameters directly from depth images without the need to know articulation model categories a priori. By contrast, existing methods that learn articulation models from raw observations typically only predict point estimates of the model parameters, which are insufficient to guarantee the safe manipulation of articulated objects. Our core contributions include a novel representation for distributions over rigid body transformations and articulation model parameters based on screw theory, von Mises-Fisher distributions, and Stiefel manifolds. Combining these concepts allows for an efficient, mathematically sound representation that implicitly satisfies the constraints that rigid body transformations and articulations must adhere to. Leveraging this representation, we introduce a novel deep learning based approach, DUST-net, that performs category-independent articulation model estimation while also providing model uncertainties. We evaluate our approach on several benchmarking datasets and real-world objects and compare its performance with two current state-of-the-art methods. Our results demonstrate that DUST-net can successfully learn distributions over articulation models for novel objects across articulation model categories, which generate point estimates with better accuracy than state-of-the-art methods and effectively capture the uncertainty over predicted model parameters due to noisy inputs. Project webpage: https://pearl-utexas.github.io/DUST-net/

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Many real-world optimization problems involve uncertain parameters with probability distributions that can be estimated using contextual feature information. In contrast to the standard approach of first estimating the distribution of uncertain parameters and then optimizing the objective based on the estimation, we propose an integrated conditional estimation-optimization (ICEO) framework that estimates the underlying conditional distribution of the random parameter while considering the structure of the optimization problem. We directly model the relationship between the conditional distribution of the random parameter and the contextual features, and then estimate the probabilistic model with an objective that aligns with the downstream optimization problem. We show that our ICEO approach is asymptotically consistent under moderate regularity conditions and further provide finite performance guarantees in the form of generalization bounds. Computationally, performing estimation with the ICEO approach is a non-convex and often non-differentiable optimization problem. We propose a general methodology for approximating the potentially non-differentiable mapping from estimated conditional distribution to the optimal decision by a differentiable function, which greatly improves the performance of gradient-based algorithms applied to the non-convex problem. We also provide a polynomial optimization solution approach in the semi-algebraic case. Numerical experiments are also conducted to show the empirical success of our approach in different situations including with limited data samples and model mismatches.

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The problem of covariance estimation for replicated surface-valued processes is examined from the functional data analysis perspective. Considerations of statistical and computational efficiency often compel the use of separability of the covariance, even though the assumption may fail in practice. We consider a setting where the covariance structure may fail to be separable locally -- either due to noise contamination or due to the presence of a~non-separable short-range dependent signal component. That is, the covariance is an additive perturbation of a separable component by a~non-separable but banded component. We introduce non-parametric estimators hinging on the novel concept of shifted partial tracing, enabling computationally efficient estimation of the model under dense observation. Due to the denoising properties of shifted partial tracing, our methods are shown to yield consistent estimators even under noisy discrete observation, without the need for smoothing. Further to deriving the convergence rates and limit theorems, we also show that the implementation of our estimators, including prediction, comes at no computational overhead relative to a separable model. Finally, we demonstrate empirical performance and computational feasibility of our methods in an extensive simulation study and on a real data set.

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A/B testing, also known as controlled experiments, refers to the statistical procedure of conducting an experiment to compare two treatments applied to different testing subjects. For example, many IT companies frequently conduct A/B testing experiments on their users who are connected and form social networks. Often, the users' responses could be related to the network connection. In this paper, we assume that the users, or the test subjects of the experiments, are connected on an undirected network, and the responses of two connected users are correlated. We include the treatment assignment, covariates features, and network connection in a conditional autoregressive model. Based on this model, we propose a design criterion that measures the variance of the estimated treatment effect and allocate the treatment settings to the test subjects by minimizing the criterion. Since the design criterion depends on an unknown network correlation parameter, we adopt the locally optimal design method and develop a hybrid optimization approach to obtain the optimal design. Through synthetic and real social network examples, we demonstrate the value of including network dependence in designing A/B testing experiments and validate that the proposed locally optimal design is robust to the choices of parameters.

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We present MultiBodySync, a novel, end-to-end trainable multi-body motion segmentation and rigid registration framework for multiple input 3D point clouds. The two non-trivial challenges posed by this multi-scan multibody setting that we investigate are: (i) guaranteeing correspondence and segmentation consistency across multiple input point clouds capturing different spatial arrangements of bodies or body parts; and (ii) obtaining robust motion-based rigid body segmentation applicable to novel object categories. We propose an approach to address these issues that incorporates spectral synchronization into an iterative deep declarative network, so as to simultaneously recover consistent correspondences as well as motion segmentation. At the same time, by explicitly disentangling the correspondence and motion segmentation estimation modules, we achieve strong generalizability across different object categories. Our extensive evaluations demonstrate that our method is effective on various datasets ranging from rigid parts in articulated objects to individually moving objects in a 3D scene, be it single-view or full point clouds.

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In this paper, we address the problem of semantic segmentation and focus on the context aggregation strategy for robust segmentation. Our motivation is that the label of a pixel is the category of the object that the pixel belongs to. We present a simple yet effective approach, object-contextual representations, characterizing a pixel by exploiting the representation of the corresponding object class. First, we construct object regions based on a feature map supervised by the ground-truth segmentation, and then compute the object region representations. Second, we compute the representation similarity between each pixel and each object region, and augment the representation of each pixel with an object contextual representation, which is a weighted aggregation of all the object region representations according to their similarities with the pixel. We empirically demonstrate that the proposed approach achieves competitive performance on six challenging semantic segmentation benchmarks: Cityscapes, ADE20K, LIP, PASCAL VOC 2012, PASCAL-Context and COCO-Stuff. Notably, we achieved the \nth{2} place on the Cityscapes leader-board with a single model.

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Despite the state-of-the-art performance for medical image segmentation, deep convolutional neural networks (CNNs) have rarely provided uncertainty estimations regarding their segmentation outputs, e.g., model (epistemic) and image-based (aleatoric) uncertainties. In this work, we analyze these different types of uncertainties for CNN-based 2D and 3D medical image segmentation tasks. We additionally propose a test-time augmentation-based aleatoric uncertainty to analyze the effect of different transformations of the input image on the segmentation output. Test-time augmentation has been previously used to improve segmentation accuracy, yet not been formulated in a consistent mathematical framework. Hence, we also propose a theoretical formulation of test-time augmentation, where a distribution of the prediction is estimated by Monte Carlo simulation with prior distributions of parameters in an image acquisition model that involves image transformations and noise. We compare and combine our proposed aleatoric uncertainty with model uncertainty. Experiments with segmentation of fetal brains and brain tumors from 2D and 3D Magnetic Resonance Images (MRI) showed that 1) the test-time augmentation-based aleatoric uncertainty provides a better uncertainty estimation than calculating the test-time dropout-based model uncertainty alone and helps to reduce overconfident incorrect predictions, and 2) our test-time augmentation outperforms a single-prediction baseline and dropout-based multiple predictions.

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Data augmentation has been widely used for training deep learning systems for medical image segmentation and plays an important role in obtaining robust and transformation-invariant predictions. However, it has seldom been used at test time for segmentation and not been formulated in a consistent mathematical framework. In this paper, we first propose a theoretical formulation of test-time augmentation for deep learning in image recognition, where the prediction is obtained through estimating its expectation by Monte Carlo simulation with prior distributions of parameters in an image acquisition model that involves image transformations and noise. We then propose a novel uncertainty estimation method based on the formulated test-time augmentation. Experiments with segmentation of fetal brains and brain tumors from 2D and 3D Magnetic Resonance Images (MRI) showed that 1) our test-time augmentation outperforms a single-prediction baseline and dropout-based multiple predictions, and 2) it provides a better uncertainty estimation than calculating the model-based uncertainty alone and helps to reduce overconfident incorrect predictions.

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Detecting objects and estimating their pose remains as one of the major challenges of the computer vision research community. There exists a compromise between localizing the objects and estimating their viewpoints. The detector ideally needs to be view-invariant, while the pose estimation process should be able to generalize towards the category-level. This work is an exploration of using deep learning models for solving both problems simultaneously. For doing so, we propose three novel deep learning architectures, which are able to perform a joint detection and pose estimation, where we gradually decouple the two tasks. We also investigate whether the pose estimation problem should be solved as a classification or regression problem, being this still an open question in the computer vision community. We detail a comparative analysis of all our solutions and the methods that currently define the state of the art for this problem. We use PASCAL3D+ and ObjectNet3D datasets to present the thorough experimental evaluation and main results. With the proposed models we achieve the state-of-the-art performance in both datasets.

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In this paper we introduce a covariance framework for the analysis of EEG and MEG data that takes into account observed temporal stationarity on small time scales and trial-to-trial variations. We formulate a model for the covariance matrix, which is a Kronecker product of three components that correspond to space, time and epochs/trials, and consider maximum likelihood estimation of the unknown parameter values. An iterative algorithm that finds approximations of the maximum likelihood estimates is proposed. We perform a simulation study to assess the performance of the estimator and investigate the influence of different assumptions about the covariance factors on the estimated covariance matrix and on its components. Apart from that, we illustrate our method on real EEG and MEG data sets. The proposed covariance model is applicable in a variety of cases where spontaneous EEG or MEG acts as source of noise and realistic noise covariance estimates are needed for accurate dipole localization, such as in evoked activity studies, or where the properties of spontaneous EEG or MEG are themselves the topic of interest, such as in combined EEG/fMRI experiments in which the correlation between EEG and fMRI signals is investigated.

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