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Journal Articles IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence Year : 2022

Uncertainty-aware Contrastive Distillation for Incremental Semantic Segmentation

Abstract

A fundamental and challenging problem in deep learning is catastrophic forgetting, i.e. the tendency of neural networks to fail to preserve the knowledge acquired from old tasks when learning new tasks. This problem has been widely investigated in the research community and several Incremental Learning (IL) approaches have been proposed in the past years. While earlier works in computer vision have mostly focused on image classification and object detection, more recently some IL approaches for semantic segmentation have been introduced. These previous works showed that, despite its simplicity, knowledge distillation can be effectively employed to alleviate catastrophic forgetting. In this paper, we follow this research direction and, inspired by recent literature on contrastive learning, we propose a novel distillation framework, Uncertainty-aware Contrastive Distillation (UCD). In a nutshell, UCD is operated by introducing a novel distillation loss that takes into account all the images in a mini-batch, enforcing similarity between features associated to all the pixels from the same classes, and pulling apart those corresponding to pixels from different classes. In order to mitigate catastrophic forgetting, we contrast features of the new model with features extracted by a frozen model learned at the previous incremental step. Our experimental results demonstrate the advantage of the proposed distillation technique, which can be used in synergy with previous IL approaches, and leads to state-of-art performance on three commonly adopted benchmarks for incremental semantic segmentation. The code is available at https://github.com/ygjwd12345/UCD.

Dates and versions

hal-03908664 , version 1 (20-12-2022)

Identifiers

Cite

Guanglei Yang, Enrico Fini, Dan Xu, Paolo Rota, Mingli Ding, et al.. Uncertainty-aware Contrastive Distillation for Incremental Semantic Segmentation. IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence, 2022, pp.1-14. ⟨10.1109/TPAMI.2022.3163806⟩. ⟨hal-03908664⟩
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