Recognition from Web Data: A Progressive Filtering Approach

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Journal Article
IEEE Transactions on Image Processing, 2018, 27 (11), pp. 5303 - 5315
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© 1992-2012 IEEE. Leveraging the abundant number of web data is a promising strategy in addressing the problem of data lacking when training convolutional neural networks (CNNs). However, the web images often contain incorrect tags, which may compromise the learned CNN model. To address this problem, this paper focuses on image classification and proposes to iterate between filtering out noisy web labels and fine-tuning the CNN model using the crawled web images. Overall, the proposed method benefits from the growing modeling capability of the learned model to correct labels for web images and learning from such new data to produce a more effective model. Our contribution is two-fold. First, we propose an iterative method that progressively improves the discriminative ability of CNNs and the accuracy of web image selection. This method is beneficial toward selecting high-quality web training images and expanding the training set as the model gets ameliorated. Second, since web images are usually complex and may not be accurately described by a single tag, we propose to assign a web image multiple labels to reduce the impact of hard label assignment. This labeling strategy mines more training samples to improve the CNN model. In the experiments, we crawl 0.5 million web images covering all categories of four public image classification data sets. Compared with the baseline which has no web images for training, we show that the proposed method brings notable improvement. We also report the competitive recognition accuracy compared with the state of the art.
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