Organising an AI challenge does not end with the final event. The long-lasting impact also needs to be organised. This chapter covers the various activities after the challenge is formally finished. The target audience of different post-challenge activities is identified. The various outputs of the challenge are listed with the means to collect them. The main part of the chapter is a template for a typical post-challenge paper, including possible graphs as well as advice on how to turn the challenge into a long-lasting benchmark.
Volumetric video is a technology that digitally records dynamic events such as artistic performances, sporting events, and remote conversations. When acquired, such volumography can be viewed from any viewpoint and timestamp on flat screens, 3D displays, or VR headsets, enabling immersive viewing experiences and more flexible content creation in a variety of applications such as sports broadcasting, video conferencing, gaming, and movie productions. With the recent advances and fast-growing interest in neural scene representations for volumetric video, there is an urgent need for a unified open-source library to streamline the process of volumetric video capturing, reconstruction, and rendering for both researchers and non-professional users to develop various algorithms and applications of this emerging technology. In this paper, we present EasyVolcap, a Python & Pytorch library for accelerating neural volumetric video research with the goal of unifying the process of multi-view data processing, 4D scene reconstruction, and efficient dynamic volumetric video rendering. Our source code is available at https://github.com/zju3dv/EasyVolcap.
This paper targets high-fidelity and real-time view synthesis of dynamic 3D scenes at 4K resolution. Recently, some methods on dynamic view synthesis have shown impressive rendering quality. However, their speed is still limited when rendering high-resolution images. To overcome this problem, we propose 4K4D, a 4D point cloud representation that supports hardware rasterization and enables unprecedented rendering speed. Our representation is built on a 4D feature grid so that the points are naturally regularized and can be robustly optimized. In addition, we design a novel hybrid appearance model that significantly boosts the rendering quality while preserving efficiency. Moreover, we develop a differentiable depth peeling algorithm to effectively learn the proposed model from RGB videos. Experiments show that our representation can be rendered at over 400 FPS on the DNA-Rendering dataset at 1080p resolution and 80 FPS on the ENeRF-Outdoor dataset at 4K resolution using an RTX 4090 GPU, which is 30x faster than previous methods and achieves the state-of-the-art rendering quality. Our project page is available at https://zju3dv.github.io/4k4d/.
This paper aims to tackle the challenge of dynamic view synthesis from multi-view videos. The key observation is that while previous grid-based methods offer consistent rendering, they fall short in capturing appearance details of a complex dynamic scene, a domain where multi-view image-based rendering methods demonstrate the opposite properties. To combine the best of two worlds, we introduce Im4D, a hybrid scene representation that consists of a grid-based geometry representation and a multi-view image-based appearance representation. Specifically, the dynamic geometry is encoded as a 4D density function composed of spatiotemporal feature planes and a small MLP network, which globally models the scene structure and facilitates the rendering consistency. We represent the scene appearance by the original multi-view videos and a network that learns to predict the color of a 3D point from image features, instead of memorizing detailed appearance totally with networks, thereby naturally making the learning of networks easier. Our method is evaluated on five dynamic view synthesis datasets including DyNeRF, ZJU-MoCap, NHR, DNA-Rendering and ENeRF-Outdoor datasets. The results show that Im4D exhibits state-of-the-art performance in rendering quality and can be trained efficiently, while realizing real-time rendering with a speed of 79.8 FPS for 512x512 images, on a single RTX 3090 GPU.
This paper tackles the challenge of creating relightable and animatable neural avatars from sparse-view (or even monocular) videos of dynamic humans under unknown illumination. Compared to studio environments, this setting is more practical and accessible but poses an extremely challenging ill-posed problem. Previous neural human reconstruction methods are able to reconstruct animatable avatars from sparse views using deformed Signed Distance Fields (SDF) but cannot recover material parameters for relighting. While differentiable inverse rendering-based methods have succeeded in material recovery of static objects, it is not straightforward to extend them to dynamic humans as it is computationally intensive to compute pixel-surface intersection and light visibility on deformed SDFs for inverse rendering. To solve this challenge, we propose a Hierarchical Distance Query (HDQ) algorithm to approximate the world space distances under arbitrary human poses. Specifically, we estimate coarse distances based on a parametric human model and compute fine distances by exploiting the local deformation invariance of SDF. Based on the HDQ algorithm, we leverage sphere tracing to efficiently estimate the surface intersection and light visibility. This allows us to develop the first system to recover animatable and relightable neural avatars from sparse view (or monocular) inputs. Experiments demonstrate that our approach is able to produce superior results compared to state-of-the-art methods. Our code will be released for reproducibility.
This paper addresses the challenge of quickly reconstructing free-viewpoint videos of dynamic humans from sparse multi-view videos. Some recent works represent the dynamic human as a canonical neural radiance field (NeRF) and a motion field, which are learned from videos through differentiable rendering. But the per-scene optimization generally requires hours. Other generalizable NeRF models leverage learned prior from datasets and reduce the optimization time by only finetuning on new scenes at the cost of visual fidelity. In this paper, we propose a novel method for learning neural volumetric videos of dynamic humans from sparse view videos in minutes with competitive visual quality. Specifically, we define a novel part-based voxelized human representation to better distribute the representational power of the network to different human parts. Furthermore, we propose a novel 2D motion parameterization scheme to increase the convergence rate of deformation field learning. Experiments demonstrate that our model can be learned 100 times faster than prior per-scene optimization methods while being competitive in the rendering quality. Training our model on a $512 \times 512$ video with 100 frames typically takes about 5 minutes on a single RTX 3090 GPU. The code will be released on our project page: https://zju3dv.github.io/instant_nvr
Graph structured data is ubiquitous in daily life and scientific areas and has attracted increasing attention. Graph Neural Networks (GNNs) have been proved to be effective in modeling graph structured data and many variants of GNN architectures have been proposed. However, much human effort is often needed to tune the architecture depending on different datasets. Researchers naturally adopt Automated Machine Learning on Graph Learning, aiming to reduce the human effort and achieve generally top-performing GNNs, but their methods focus more on the architecture search. To understand GNN practitioners' automated solutions, we organized AutoGraph Challenge at KDD Cup 2020, emphasizing on automated graph neural networks for node classification. We received top solutions especially from industrial tech companies like Meituan, Alibaba and Twitter, which are already open sourced on Github. After detailed comparisons with solutions from academia, we quantify the gaps between academia and industry on modeling scope, effectiveness and efficiency, and show that (1) academia AutoML for Graph solutions focus on GNN architecture search while industrial solutions, especially the winning ones in the KDD Cup, tend to obtain an overall solution (2) by neural architecture search only, academia solutions achieve on average 97.3% accuracy of industrial solutions (3) academia solutions are cheap to obtain with several GPU hours while industrial solutions take a few months' labors. Academic solutions also contain much fewer parameters.
* arXiv admin note: text overlap with arXiv:2110.05802
This paper aims to reconstruct an animatable human model from a video of very sparse camera views. Some recent works represent human geometry and appearance with neural radiance fields and utilize parametric human models to produce deformation fields for animation, which enables them to recover detailed 3D human models from videos. However, their reconstruction results tend to be noisy due to the lack of surface constraints on radiance fields. Moreover, as they generate the human appearance in 3D space, their rendering quality heavily depends on the accuracy of deformation fields. To solve these problems, we propose Animatable Neural Implicit Surface (AniSDF), which models the human geometry with a signed distance field and defers the appearance generation to the 2D image space with a 2D neural renderer. The signed distance field naturally regularizes the learned geometry, enabling the high-quality reconstruction of human bodies, which can be further used to improve the rendering speed. Moreover, the 2D neural renderer can be learned to compensate for geometric errors, making the rendering more robust to inaccurate deformations. Experiments on several datasets show that the proposed approach outperforms recent human reconstruction and synthesis methods by a large margin.