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4 News items, Awards, Events or Talks found.

Learn about the MERL Seminar Series.

  •  NEWS    MERL researchers presenting four papers and organizing the VLAR-SMART101 Workshop at ICCV 2023
    Date: October 2, 2023 - October 6, 2023
    Where: Paris/France
    MERL Contacts: Moitreya Chatterjee; Anoop Cherian; Michael J. Jones; Toshiaki Koike-Akino; Suhas Lohit; Tim K. Marks; Pedro Miraldo; Kuan-Chuan Peng; Ye Wang
    Research Areas: Artificial Intelligence, Computer Vision, Machine Learning
    • MERL researchers are presenting 4 papers and organizing the VLAR-SMART-101 workshop at the ICCV 2023 conference, which will be held in Paris, France October 2-6. ICCV is one of the most prestigious and competitive international conferences in computer vision. Details are provided below.

      1. Conference paper: “Steered Diffusion: A Generalized Framework for Plug-and-Play Conditional Image Synthesis,” by Nithin Gopalakrishnan Nair, Anoop Cherian, Suhas Lohit, Ye Wang, Toshiaki Koike-Akino, Vishal Patel, and Tim K. Marks

      Conditional generative models typically demand large annotated training sets to achieve high-quality synthesis. As a result, there has been significant interest in plug-and-play generation, i.e., using a pre-defined model to guide the generative process. In this paper, we introduce Steered Diffusion, a generalized framework for fine-grained photorealistic zero-shot conditional image generation using a diffusion model trained for unconditional generation. The key idea is to steer the image generation of the diffusion model during inference via designing a loss using a pre-trained inverse model that characterizes the conditional task. Our model shows clear qualitative and quantitative improvements over state-of-the-art diffusion-based plug-and-play models, while adding negligible computational cost.

      2. Conference paper: "BANSAC: A dynamic BAyesian Network for adaptive SAmple Consensus," by Valter Piedade and Pedro Miraldo

      We derive a dynamic Bayesian network that updates individual data points' inlier scores while iterating RANSAC. At each iteration, we apply weighted sampling using the updated scores. Our method works with or without prior data point scorings. In addition, we use the updated inlier/outlier scoring for deriving a new stopping criterion for the RANSAC loop. Our method outperforms the baselines in accuracy while needing less computational time.

      3. Conference paper: "Robust Frame-to-Frame Camera Rotation Estimation in Crowded Scenes," by Fabien Delattre, David Dirnfeld, Phat Nguyen, Stephen Scarano, Michael J. Jones, Pedro Miraldo, and Erik Learned-Miller

      We present a novel approach to estimating camera rotation in crowded, real-world scenes captured using a handheld monocular video camera. Our method uses a novel generalization of the Hough transform on SO3 to efficiently find the camera rotation most compatible with the optical flow. Because the setting is not addressed well by other data sets, we provide a new dataset and benchmark, with high-accuracy and rigorously annotated ground truth on 17 video sequences. Our method is more accurate by almost 40 percent than the next best method.

      4. Workshop paper: "Tensor Factorization for Leveraging Cross-Modal Knowledge in Data-Constrained Infrared Object Detection" by Manish Sharma*, Moitreya Chatterjee*, Kuan-Chuan Peng, Suhas Lohit, and Michael Jones

      While state-of-the-art object detection methods for RGB images have reached some level of maturity, the same is not true for Infrared (IR) images. The primary bottleneck towards bridging this gap is the lack of sufficient labeled training data in the IR images. Towards addressing this issue, we present TensorFact, a novel tensor decomposition method which splits the convolution kernels of a CNN into low-rank factor matrices with fewer parameters. This compressed network is first pre-trained on RGB images and then augmented with only a few parameters. This augmented network is then trained on IR images, while freezing the weights trained on RGB. This prevents it from over-fitting, allowing it to generalize better. Experiments show that our method outperforms state-of-the-art.

      5. “Vision-and-Language Algorithmic Reasoning (VLAR) Workshop and SMART-101 Challenge” by Anoop Cherian,  Kuan-Chuan Peng, Suhas Lohit, Tim K. Marks, Ram Ramrakhya, Honglu Zhou, Kevin A. Smith, Joanna Matthiesen, and Joshua B. Tenenbaum

      MERL researchers along with researchers from MIT, GeorgiaTech, Math Kangaroo USA, and Rutgers University are jointly organizing a workshop on vision-and-language algorithmic reasoning at ICCV 2023 and conducting a challenge based on the SMART-101 puzzles described in the paper: Are Deep Neural Networks SMARTer than Second Graders?. A focus of this workshop is to bring together outstanding faculty/researchers working at the intersections of vision, language, and cognition to provide their opinions on the recent breakthroughs in large language models and artificial general intelligence, as well as showcase their cutting edge research that could inspire the audience to search for the missing pieces in our quest towards solving the puzzle of artificial intelligence.

      Workshop link:
  •  NEWS    MERL researchers presenting four papers and co-organizing a workshop at CVPR 2023
    Date: June 18, 2023 - June 22, 2023
    Where: Vancouver/Canada
    MERL Contacts: Anoop Cherian; Michael J. Jones; Suhas Lohit; Kuan-Chuan Peng
    Research Areas: Artificial Intelligence, Computer Vision, Machine Learning
    • MERL researchers are presenting 4 papers and co-organizing a workshop at the CVPR 2023 conference, which will be held in Vancouver, Canada June 18-22. CVPR is one of the most prestigious and competitive international conferences in computer vision. Details are provided below.

      1. “Are Deep Neural Networks SMARTer than Second Graders,” by Anoop Cherian, Kuan-Chuan Peng, Suhas Lohit, Kevin Smith, and Joshua B. Tenenbaum

      We present SMART: a Simple Multimodal Algorithmic Reasoning Task and the associated SMART-101 dataset for evaluating the abstraction, deduction, and generalization abilities of neural networks in solving visuo-linguistic puzzles designed for children in the 6-8 age group. Our experiments using SMART-101 reveal that powerful deep models are not better than random accuracy when analyzed for generalization. We also evaluate large language models (including ChatGPT) on a subset of SMART-101 and find that while these models show convincing reasoning abilities, their answers are often incorrect.


      2. “EVAL: Explainable Video Anomaly Localization,” by Ashish Singh, Michael J. Jones, and Erik Learned-Miller

      This work presents a method for detecting unusual activities in videos by building a high-level model of activities found in nominal videos of a scene. The high-level features used in the model are human understandable and include attributes such as the object class and the directions and speeds of motion. Such high-level features allow our method to not only detect anomalous activity but also to provide explanations for why it is anomalous.


      3. "Aligning Step-by-Step Instructional Diagrams to Video Demonstrations," by Jiahao Zhang, Anoop Cherian, Yanbin Liu, Yizhak Ben-Shabat, Cristian Rodriguez, and Stephen Gould

      The rise of do-it-yourself (DIY) videos on the web has made it possible even for an unskilled person (or a skilled robot) to imitate and follow instructions to complete complex real world tasks. In this paper, we consider the novel problem of aligning instruction steps that are depicted as assembly diagrams (commonly seen in Ikea assembly manuals) with video segments from in-the-wild videos. We present a new dataset: Ikea Assembly in the Wild (IAW) and propose a contrastive learning framework for aligning instruction diagrams with video clips.


      4. "HaLP: Hallucinating Latent Positives for Skeleton-Based Self-Supervised Learning of Actions," by Anshul Shah, Aniket Roy, Ketul Shah, Shlok Kumar Mishra, David Jacobs, Anoop Cherian, and Rama Chellappa

      In this work, we propose a new contrastive learning approach to train models for skeleton-based action recognition without labels. Our key contribution is a simple module, HaLP: Hallucinating Latent Positives for contrastive learning. HaLP explores the latent space of poses in suitable directions to generate new positives. Our experiments using HaLP demonstrates strong empirical improvements.


      The 4th Workshop on Fair, Data-Efficient, and Trusted Computer Vision

      MERL researcher Kuan-Chuan Peng is co-organizing the fourth Workshop on Fair, Data-Efficient, and Trusted Computer Vision ( in conjunction with CVPR 2023 on June 18, 2023. This workshop provides a focused venue for discussing and disseminating research in the areas of fairness, bias, and trust in computer vision, as well as adjacent domains such as computational social science and public policy.
  •  NEWS    MERL presenting 8 papers at ICASSP 2022
    Date: May 22, 2022 - May 27, 2022
    Where: Singapore
    MERL Contacts: Anoop Cherian; Chiori Hori; Toshiaki Koike-Akino; Jonathan Le Roux; Tim K. Marks; Philip V. Orlik; Kuan-Chuan Peng; Pu (Perry) Wang; Gordon Wichern
    Research Areas: Artificial Intelligence, Computer Vision, Signal Processing, Speech & Audio
    • MERL researchers are presenting 8 papers at the IEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech & Signal Processing (ICASSP), which is being held in Singapore from May 22-27, 2022. A week of virtual presentations also took place earlier this month.

      Topics to be presented include recent advances in speech recognition, audio processing, scene understanding, computational sensing, and classification.

      ICASSP is the flagship conference of the IEEE Signal Processing Society, and the world's largest and most comprehensive technical conference focused on the research advances and latest technological development in signal and information processing. The event attracts more than 2000 participants each year.
  •  NEWS    MERL researchers presenting four papers and organizing two workshops at CVPR 2020 conference
    Date: June 14, 2020 - June 19, 2020
    MERL Contacts: Anoop Cherian; Michael J. Jones; Toshiaki Koike-Akino; Tim K. Marks; Kuan-Chuan Peng; Ye Wang
    Research Areas: Artificial Intelligence, Computer Vision, Machine Learning
    • MERL researchers are presenting four papers (two oral papers and two posters) and organizing two workshops at the IEEE/CVF Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR 2020) conference.

      CVPR 2020 Orals with MERL authors:
      1. "Dynamic Multiscale Graph Neural Networks for 3D Skeleton Based Human Motion Prediction," by Maosen Li, Siheng Chen, Yangheng Zhao, Ya Zhang, Yanfeng Wang, Qi Tian
      2. "Collaborative Motion Prediction via Neural Motion Message Passing," by Yue Hu, Siheng Chen, Ya Zhang, Xiao Gu

      CVPR 2020 Posters with MERL authors:
      3. "LUVLi Face Alignment: Estimating Landmarks’ Location, Uncertainty, and Visibility Likelihood," by Abhinav Kumar, Tim K. Marks, Wenxuan Mou, Ye Wang, Michael Jones, Anoop Cherian, Toshiaki Koike-Akino, Xiaoming Liu, Chen Feng
      4. "MotionNet: Joint Perception and Motion Prediction for Autonomous Driving Based on Bird’s Eye View Maps," by Pengxiang Wu, Siheng Chen, Dimitris N. Metaxas

      CVPR 2020 Workshops co-organized by MERL researchers:
      1. Fair, Data-Efficient and Trusted Computer Vision
      2. Deep Declarative Networks.