Multispectral imagery is frequently incorporated into agricultural tasks, providing valuable support for applications such as image segmentation, crop monitoring, field robotics, and yield estimation. From an image segmentation perspective, multispectral cameras can provide rich spectral information, helping with noise reduction and feature extraction. As such, this paper concentrates on the use of fusion approaches to enhance the segmentation process in agricultural applications. More specifically, in this work, we compare different fusion approaches by combining RGB and NDVI as inputs for crop row detection, which can be useful in autonomous robots operating in the field. The inputs are used individually as well as combined at different times of the process (early and late fusion) to perform classical and DL-based semantic segmentation. In this study, two agriculture-related datasets are subjected to analysis using both deep learning (DL)-based and classical segmentation methodologies. The experiments reveal that classical segmentation methods, utilizing techniques such as edge detection and thresholding, can effectively compete with DL-based algorithms, particularly in tasks requiring precise foreground-background separation. This suggests that traditional methods retain their efficacy in certain specialized applications within the agricultural domain. Moreover, among the fusion strategies examined, late fusion emerges as the most robust approach, demonstrating superiority in adaptability and effectiveness across varying segmentation scenarios. The dataset and code is available at https://github.com/Cybonic/MISAgriculture.git.
* This preprint has been submitted to ROBOT23: Sixth Iberian Robotics
Autonomous driving systems often require reliable loop closure detection to guarantee reduced localization drift. Recently, 3D LiDAR-based localization methods have used retrieval-based place recognition to find revisited places efficiently. However, when deployed in challenging real-world scenarios, the place recognition models become more complex, which comes at the cost of high computational demand. This work tackles this problem from an information-retrieval perspective, adopting a first-retrieve-then-re-ranking paradigm, where an initial loop candidate ranking, generated from a 3D place recognition model, is re-ordered by a proposed lightweight transformer-based re-ranking approach (TReR). The proposed approach relies on global descriptors only, being agnostic to the place recognition model. The experimental evaluation, conducted on the KITTI Odometry dataset, where we compared TReR with s.o.t.a. re-ranking approaches such as alphaQE and SGV, indicate the robustness and efficiency when compared to alphaQE while offering a good trade-off between robustness and efficiency when compared to SGV.
* This preprint has been submitted to 26th IEEE International
Conference on Intelligent Transportation Systems ITSC 2023
With the rise of Deep Neural Networks, machine learning systems are nowadays ubiquitous in a number of real-world applications, which bears the need for highly reliable models. This requires a thorough look not only at the accuracy of such systems, but also to their predictive uncertainty. Hence, we propose a novel technique (with two different variations, named M-ATTA and V-ATTA) based on test time augmentation, to improve the uncertainty calibration of deep models for image classification. Unlike other test time augmentation approaches, M/V-ATTA improves uncertainty calibration without affecting the model's accuracy, by leveraging an adaptive weighting system. We evaluate the performance of the technique with respect to different metrics of uncertainty calibration. Empirical results, obtained on CIFAR-10, CIFAR-100, as well as on the benchmark Aerial Image Dataset, indicate that the proposed approach outperforms state-of-the-art calibration techniques, while maintaining the baseline classification performance. Code for M/V-ATTA available at: https://github.com/pedrormconde/MV-ATTA.
* Submitted to IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine
Indoor scene classification has become an important task in perception modules and has been widely used in various applications. However, problems such as intra-category variability and inter-category similarity have been holding back the models' performance, which leads to the need for new types of features to obtain a more meaningful scene representation. A semantic segmentation mask provides pixel-level information about the objects available in the scene, which makes it a promising source of information to obtain a more meaningful local representation of the scene. Therefore, in this work, a novel approach that uses a semantic segmentation mask to obtain a 2D spatial layout of the object categories across the scene, designated by segmentation-based semantic features (SSFs), is proposed. These features represent, per object category, the pixel count, as well as the 2D average position and respective standard deviation values. Moreover, a two-branch network, GS2F2App, that exploits CNN-based global features extracted from RGB images and the segmentation-based features extracted from the proposed SSFs, is also proposed. GS2F2App was evaluated in two indoor scene benchmark datasets: the SUN RGB-D and the NYU Depth V2, achieving state-of-the-art results on both datasets.
The journal impact factor (JIF) is often equated with journal quality and the quality of the peer review of the papers submitted to the journal. We examined the association between the content of peer review and JIF by analysing 10,000 peer review reports submitted to 1,644 medical and life sciences journals. Two researchers hand-coded a random sample of 2,000 sentences. We then trained machine learning models to classify all 187,240 sentences as contributing or not contributing to content categories. We examined the association between ten groups of journals defined by JIF deciles and the content of peer reviews using linear mixed-effects models, adjusting for the length of the review. The JIF ranged from 0.21 to 74.70. The length of peer reviews increased from the lowest (median number of words 185) to the JIF group (387 words). The proportion of sentences allocated to different content categories varied widely, even within JIF groups. For thoroughness, sentences on 'Materials and Methods' were more common in the highest JIF journals than in the lowest JIF group (difference of 7.8 percentage points; 95% CI 4.9 to 10.7%). The trend for 'Presentation and Reporting' went in the opposite direction, with the highest JIF journals giving less emphasis to such content (difference -8.9%; 95% CI -11.3 to -6.5%). For helpfulness, reviews for higher JIF journals devoted less attention to 'Suggestion and Solution' and provided fewer Examples than lower impact factor journals. No, or only small differences were evident for other content categories. In conclusion, peer review in journals with higher JIF tends to be more thorough in discussing the methods used but less helpful in terms of suggesting solutions and providing examples. Differences were modest and variability high, indicating that the JIF is a bad predictor for the quality of peer review of an individual manuscript.
Autonomous Vehicles (AV) are becoming more capable of navigating in complex environments with dynamic and changing conditions. A key component that enables these intelligent vehicles to overcome such conditions and become more autonomous is the sophistication of the perception and localization systems. As part of the localization system, place recognition has benefited from recent developments in other perception tasks such as place categorization or object recognition, namely with the emergence of deep learning (DL) frameworks. This paper surveys recent approaches and methods used in place recognition, particularly those based on deep learning. The contributions of this work are twofold: surveying recent sensors such as 3D LiDARs and RADARs, applied in place recognition; and categorizing the various DL-based place recognition works into supervised, unsupervised, semi-supervised, parallel, and hierarchical categories. First, this survey introduces key place recognition concepts to contextualize the reader. Then, sensor characteristics are addressed. This survey proceeds by elaborating on the various DL-based works, presenting summaries for each framework. Some lessons learned from this survey include: the importance of NetVLAD for supervised end-to-end learning; the advantages of unsupervised approaches in place recognition, namely for cross-domain applications; or the increasing tendency of recent works to seek, not only for higher performance but also for higher efficiency.
* Under review in IEEE Transactions on Intelligent Vehicles. This work
was submitted on the 13/01/2021 to the IEEE for possible publication.
Copyright may be transferred without notice, after which this version may no
longer be accessible. Upon acceptance of the article by IEEE, the preprint
article will be replaced with the accepted version
Deep networks have been progressively adapted to new sensor modalities, namely to 3D LiDAR, which led to unprecedented achievements in autonomous vehicle-related applications such as place recognition. One of the main challenges of deep models in place recognition is to extract efficient and descriptive feature representations that relate places based on their similarity. To address the problem of place recognition using LiDAR data, this paper proposes a novel 3D LiDAR-based deep learning network (named AttDLNet) that comprises an encoder network and exploits an attention mechanism to selectively focus on long-range context and interfeature relationships. The proposed network is trained and validated on the KITTI dataset, using the cosine loss for training and a retrieval-based place recognition pipeline for validation. Additionally, an ablation study is presented to assess the best network configuration. Results show that the encoder network features are already very descriptive, but adding attention to the network further improves performance. From the ablation study, results indicate that the middle encoder layers have the highest mean performance, while deeper layers are more robust to orientation change. The code is publicly available on the project website: https://github.com/Cybonic/ AttDLNet