Posts

Instantaneous Perception of Moving Objects in 3D

The perception of 3D motion of surrounding traffic participants is crucial for driving safety. While existing works primarily focus on general large motions, we contend that the instantaneous detection and quantification of subtle motions is equally important as they indicate the nuances in driving behavior that may be safety critical, such as behaviors near a stop sign of parking positions. We delve into this under-explored task, examining its unique challenges and developing our solution, accompanied by a carefully designed benchmark. Specifically, due to the lack of correspondences between consecutive frames of sparse Lidar point clouds, static objects might appear to be moving – the so-called swimming effect. This intertwines with the true object motion, thereby posing ambiguity in accurate estimation, especially for subtle motions. To address this, we propose to leverage local occupancy completion of object point clouds to densify the shape cue, and mitigate the impact of swimming artifacts. The occupancy completion is learned in an end-to-end fashion together with the detection of moving objects and the estimation of their motion, instantaneously as soon as objects start to move. Extensive experiments demonstrate superior performance compared to standard 3D motion estimation approaches, particularly highlighting our method’s specialized treatment of subtle motions.

NeurOCS: Neural NOCS Supervision for Monocular 3D Object Localization

Monocular 3D object localization in driving scenes is a crucial task, but challenging due to its ill-posed nature. Estimating 3D coordinates for each pixel on the object surface holds great potential as it provides dense 2D-3D geometric constraints for the underlying PnP problem. However, high-quality ground truth supervision is not available in driving scenes due to sparsity and various artifacts of Lidar data, as well as the practical infeasibility of collecting per-instance CAD models. In this work, we present NeurOCS, a framework that uses instance masks and 3D boxes as input to learn 3D object shapes by means of differentiable rendering, which further serves as supervision for learning dense object coordinates. Our approach rests on insights in learning a category-level shape prior directly from real driving scenes, while properly handling single-view ambiguities. Furthermore, we study and make critical design choices to learn object coordinates more effectively from an object-centric view. Altogether, our framework leads to new state-of-the-art in monocular 3D localization that ranks 1st on the KITTI-Object benchmark among published monocular methods.

Weakly But Deeply Supervised Occlusion-Reasoned Parametric Road Layouts

We propose an end-to-end network that takes a single perspective RGB image of a complex road scene as input, to produce occlusion-reasoned layouts in perspective space as well as a parametric bird’s-eye-view (BEV) space. In contrast to prior works that require dense supervision such as semantic labels in perspective view, our method only requires human annotations for parametric attributes that are cheaper and less ambiguous to obtain. To solve this challenging task, our design is comprised of modules that incorporate inductive biases to learn occlusion-reasoning, geometric transformation and semantic abstraction, where each module may be supervised by appropriately transforming the parametric annotations. We demonstrate how our design choices and proposed deep supervision help achieve meaningful representations and accurate predictions. We validate our approach on two public datasets, KITTI and NuScenes, to achieve state-of-the-art results with considerably less human supervision.

Fusing the Old with the New: Learning Relative Pose with Geometry-Guided Uncertainty

Learning methods for relative camera pose estimation have been developed largely in isolation from classical geometric approaches. The question of how to integrate predictions from deep neural networks (DNNs) and solutions from geometric solvers, such as the 5-point algorithm [37], has as yet remained under-explored. In this paper, we present a novel framework that involves probabilistic fusion between the two families of predictions during network training, with a view to leveraging their complementary benefits in a learnable way. The fusion is achieved by learning the DNN un- certainty under explicit guidance by the geometric uncertainty, thereby learning to take into account the geometric solution in relation to the DNN prediction. Our network features a self-attention graph neural network, which drives the learning by enforcing strong interactions between different correspondences and potentially modeling complex relationships between points. We propose motion parmeterizations suitable for learning and show that our method achieves state-of-the-art performance on the challenging DeMoN [61] and ScanNet [8] datasets. While we focus on relative pose, we envision that our pipeline is broadly applicable for fusing classical geometry and deep learning.

Pseudo RGB-D for Self-Improving Monocular SLAM and Depth Prediction

Classical monocular Simultaneous Localization And Mapping (SLAM) and the recently emerging convolutional neural networks (CNNs) for monocular depth prediction represent two largely disjoint approaches towards building a 3D map of the surrounding environment. In this paper, we demonstrate that the coupling of these two by leveraging the strengths of each mitigates the other’s shortcomings. Specifically, we propose a joint narrow and wide baseline based self-improving framework, where on the one hand the CNN-predicted depth is leveraged to perform $ extit(Unknown sysvar: (pseudo))$ RGB-D feature-based SLAM, leading to better accuracy and robustness than the monocular RGB SLAM baseline. On the other hand, the bundle-adjusted 3D scene structures and camera poses from the more principled geometric SLAM are injected back into the depth network through novel wide baseline losses proposed for improving the depth prediction network, which then continues to contribute towards better pose and 3D structure estimation in the next iteration. We emphasize that our framework only requires $ extit(Unknown sysvar: ( unlabeled monocular))$ videos in both training and inference stages, and yet is able to outperform state-of-the-art self-supervised $ extit(Unknown sysvar: (monocular))$ and $ extit(Unknown sysvar: (stereo))$ depth prediction networks (e.g, Monodepth2) and feature based monocular SLAM system (i.e, ORB-SLAM). Extensive experiments on KITTI and TUM RGB-D datasets verify the superiority of our self-improving geometry-CNN framework.

Image Stitching and Rectification for Hand-Held Cameras

In this paper, we derive a new differential homography that can account for the scanline-varying camera poses in Rolling Shutter (RS) cameras, and demonstrate its application to carry out RS-aware image stitching and rectification at one stroke. Despite the high complexity of RS geometry, we focus in this paper on a special yet common input — two consecutive frames from a video stream, wherein the inter-frame motion is restricted from being arbitrarily large. This allows us to adopt simpler differential motion model, leading to a straightforward and practical minimal solver. To deal with non-planar scene and camera parallax in stitching, we further propose an RS-aware spatially-varying homogarphy field in the principle of As-Projective-As-Possible (APAP). We show superior performance over state-of-the-art methods both in RS image stitching and rectification, especially for images captured by hand-held shaking cameras.

Learning Monocular Visual Odometry via Self-Supervised Long-Term Modeling

Monocular visual odometry (VO) suffers severely from error accumulation during frame-to-frame pose estimation. In this paper, we present a self-supervised learning method for VO with special consideration for consistency over longer sequences. To this end, we model the long-term dependency in pose prediction using a pose network that features a two-layer convolutional LSTM module. We train the networks with purely self-supervised losses, including a cycle consistency loss that mimics the loop closure module in geometric VO. Inspired by prior geometric systems, we allow the networks to see beyond a small temporal window during training, through a novel a loss that incorporates temporally distant ( g $O(100)$) frames. Given GPU memory constraints, we propose a stage-wise training mechanism, where the first stage operates in a local time window and the second stage refines the poses with a “global” loss given the first stage features. We demonstrate competitive results on several standard VO datasets, including KITTI and TUM RGB-D.

Peek-a-boo: Occlusion Reasoning in Indoor Scenes with Plane Representations

We address the challenging task of occlusion-aware indoor 3D scene understanding. We represent scenes by a set of planes, where each one is defined by its normal, offset and two masks outlining (i) the extent of the visible part and (ii) the full region that consists of both visible and occluded parts of the plane. We infer these planes from a single input image with a novel neural network architecture. It consists of a two-branch category-specific module that aims to predict layout and objects of the scene separately so that different types of planes can be handled better. We also introduce a novel loss function based on plane warping that can leverage multiple views at training time for improved occlusion-aware reasoning. In order to train and evaluate our occlusion-reasoning model, we use the ScanNet dataset and propose (i) a strategy to automatically extract ground truth for both visible and hidden regions and (ii) a new evaluation metric that specifically focuses on the prediction in hidden regions. We empirically demonstrate that our proposed approach can achieve higher accuracy for occlusion reasoning compared to competitive baselines on the ScanNet dataset, e.g. 42.65% relative improvement on hidden regions.

Understanding Road Layout from Videos as a Whole

In this paper, we address the problem of inferring the layout of complex road scenes from video sequences. To this end, we formulate it as a top-view road attributes prediction problem and our goal is to predict these attributes for each frame both accurately and consistently. In contrast to prior work, we exploit the following three novel aspects: leveraging camera motions in videos, including context cues and incorporating long-term video information. Specifically, we introduce a model that aims to enforce prediction consistency in videos. Our model consists of one LSTM and one Feature Transform Module (FTM). The former implicitly incorporates the consistency constraint with its hidden states, and the latter explicitly takes the camera motion into consideration when aggregating information along videos. Moreover, we propose to incorporate context information by introducing road participants, e.g. objects, into our model. When the entire video sequence is available, our model is also able to encode both local and global cues, e.g. information from both past and future frames. Experiments on two data sets show that: (1) Incorporating either global or contextual cues improves the prediction accuracy and leveraging both gives the best performance. (2) Introducing the LSTM and FTM modules improves the prediction consistency in videos. (3) The proposed method outperforms the SOTA by a large margin.

Degeneracy in Self-Calibration Revisited and a Deep Learning Solution for Uncalibrated SLAM

Self-calibration of camera intrinsics and radial distortion has a long history of research in the computer vision community. However, it remains rare to see real applications of such techniques to modern Simultaneous Localization And Mapping (SLAM) systems, especially in driving scenarios. In this paper, we revisit the geometric approach to this problem, and provide a theoretical proof that explicitly shows the ambiguity between radial distortion and scene depth when two-view geometry is used to self-calibrate the radial distortion. In view of such geometric degeneracy, we propose a learning approach that trains a convolutional neural network (CNN) on a large amount of synthetic data. We demonstrate the utility of our proposed method by applying it as a checkerboard-free calibration tool for SLAM, achieving comparable or superior performance to previous learning and hand-crafted method