Absolute rotation estimation is an important topic in 3D computer vision. Existing works in literature generally employ a multi-stage (at least two-stage) estimation strategy where multiple independent operations (feature matching, two-view rotation estimation, and rotation averaging) are implemented sequentially. However, such a multi-stage strategy inevitably leads to the accumulation of the errors caused by each involved operation, and degrades its final estimation on global rotations accordingly. To address this problem, we propose an End-to-end method for estimating Absolution Rotations from multi-view images based on deep neural Networks, called EAR-Net. The proposed EAR-Net consists of an epipolar confidence graph construction module and a confidence-aware rotation averaging module. The epipolar confidence graph construction module is explored to simultaneously predict pairwise relative rotations among the input images and their corresponding confidences, resulting in a weighted graph (called epipolar confidence graph). Based on this graph, the confidence-aware rotation averaging module, which is differentiable, is explored to predict the absolute rotations. Thanks to the introduced confidences of the relative rotations, the proposed EAR-Net could effectively handle outlier cases. Experimental results on three public datasets demonstrate that EAR-Net outperforms the state-of-the-art methods by a large margin in terms of accuracy and speed.
Summarizing knowledge from animals and human beings inspires robotic innovations. In this work, we propose a framework for driving legged robots act like real animals with lifelike agility and strategy in complex environments. Inspired by large pre-trained models witnessed with impressive performance in language and image understanding, we introduce the power of advanced deep generative models to produce motor control signals stimulating legged robots to act like real animals. Unlike conventional controllers and end-to-end RL methods that are task-specific, we propose to pre-train generative models over animal motion datasets to preserve expressive knowledge of animal behavior. The pre-trained model holds sufficient primitive-level knowledge yet is environment-agnostic. It is then reused for a successive stage of learning to align with the environments by traversing a number of challenging obstacles that are rarely considered in previous approaches, including creeping through narrow spaces, jumping over hurdles, freerunning over scattered blocks, etc. Finally, a task-specific controller is trained to solve complex downstream tasks by reusing the knowledge from previous stages. Enriching the knowledge regarding each stage does not affect the usage of other levels of knowledge. This flexible framework offers the possibility of continual knowledge accumulation at different levels. We successfully apply the trained multi-level controllers to the MAX robot, a quadrupedal robot developed in-house, to mimic animals, traverse complex obstacles, and play in a designed challenging multi-agent Chase Tag Game, where lifelike agility and strategy emerge on the robots. The present research pushes the frontier of robot control with new insights on reusing multi-level pre-trained knowledge and solving highly complex downstream tasks in the real world.
Despite recommender systems play a key role in network content platforms, mining the user's interests is still a significant challenge. Existing works predict the user interest by utilizing user behaviors, i.e., clicks, views, etc., but current solutions are ineffective when users perform unsettled activities. The latter ones involve new users, which have few activities of any kind, and sparse users who have low-frequency behaviors. We uniformly describe both these user-types as "cold users", which are very common but often neglected in network content platforms. To address this issue, we enhance the representation of the user interest by combining his social interest, e.g., friendship, following bloggers, interest groups, etc., with the activity behaviors. Thus, in this work, we present a novel algorithm entitled SocialNet, which adopts a two-stage method to progressively extract the coarse-grained and fine-grained social interest. Our technique then concatenates SocialNet's output with the original user representation to get the final user representation that combines behavior interests and social interests. Offline experiments on Tencent video's recommender system demonstrate the superiority over the baseline behavior-based model. The online experiment also shows a significant performance improvement in clicks and view time in the real-world recommendation system. The source code is available at https://github.com/Social4Rec/SocialNet.
Learning a fast and discriminative patch descriptor is a challenging topic in computer vision. Recently, many existing works focus on training various descriptor learning networks by minimizing a triplet loss (or its variants), which is expected to decrease the distance between each positive pair and increase the distance between each negative pair. However, such an expectation has to be lowered due to the non-perfect convergence of network optimizer to a local solution. Addressing this problem and the open computational speed problem, we propose a Descriptor Distillation framework for local descriptor learning, called DesDis, where a student model gains knowledge from a pre-trained teacher model, and it is further enhanced via a designed teacher-student regularizer. This teacher-student regularizer is to constrain the difference between the positive (also negative) pair similarity from the teacher model and that from the student model, and we theoretically prove that a more effective student model could be trained by minimizing a weighted combination of the triplet loss and this regularizer, than its teacher which is trained by minimizing the triplet loss singly. Under the proposed DesDis, many existing descriptor networks could be embedded as the teacher model, and accordingly, both equal-weight and light-weight student models could be derived, which outperform their teacher in either accuracy or speed. Experimental results on 3 public datasets demonstrate that the equal-weight student models, derived from the proposed DesDis framework by utilizing three typical descriptor learning networks as teacher models, could achieve significantly better performances than their teachers and several other comparative methods. In addition, the derived light-weight models could achieve 8 times or even faster speeds than the comparative methods under similar patch verification performances
Click-through rate prediction (CTR) and post-click conversion rate prediction (CVR) play key roles across all industrial ranking systems, such as recommendation systems, online advertising, and search engines. Different from the extensive research on CTR, there is much less research on CVR estimation, whose main challenge is extreme data sparsity with one or two orders of magnitude reduction in the number of samples than CTR. People try to solve this problem with the paradigm of multi-task learning with the sufficient samples of CTR, but the typical hard sharing method can't effectively solve this problem, because it is difficult to analyze which parts of network components can be shared and which parts are in conflict, i.e., there is a large inaccuracy with artificially designed neurons sharing. In this paper, we model CVR in a brand-new method by adopting the lottery-ticket-hypothesis-based sparse sharing multi-task learning, which can automatically and flexibly learn which neuron weights to be shared without artificial experience. Experiments on the dataset gathered from traffic logs of Tencent video's recommendation system demonstrate that sparse sharing in the CVR model significantly outperforms competitive methods. Due to the nature of weight sparsity in sparse sharing, it can also significantly reduce computational complexity and memory usage which are very important in the industrial recommendation system.