Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 34 (NeurIPS 2021)
Bowen Zhang, Yifan liu, Zhi Tian, Chunhua Shen
Semantic segmentation requires per-pixel prediction for a given image. Typically, the output resolution of a segmentation network is severely reduced due to the downsampling operations in the CNN backbone. Most previous methods employ upsampling decoders to recover the spatial resolution.Various decoders were designed in the literature. Here, we propose a novel decoder, termed dynamic neural representational decoder (NRD), which is simple yet significantly more efficient. As each location on the encoder's output corresponds to a local patch of the semantic labels, in this work, we represent these local patches of labels with compact neural networks. This neural representation enables our decoder to leverage the smoothness prior in the semantic label space, and thus makes our decoder more efficient. Furthermore, these neural representations are dynamically generated and conditioned on the outputs of the encoder networks. The desired semantic labels can be efficiently decoded from the neural representations, resulting in high-resolution semantic segmentation predictions.We empirically show that our proposed decoder can outperform the decoder in DeeplabV3+ with only $\sim$$30\%$ computational complexity, and achieve competitive performance with the methods using dilated encoders with only $\sim$$15\% $ computation. Experiments on Cityscapes, ADE20K, and Pascal Context demonstrate the effectiveness and efficiency of our proposed method.