Image-to-image translation aims to learn the mapping between two visual domains. There are two main challenges for many applications: 1) the lack of aligned training pairs and 2) multiple possible outputs from a single input image. In this work, we present an approach based on disentangled representation for producing diverse outputs without paired training images. To achieve diversity, we propose to embed images onto two spaces: a domain-invariant content space capturing shared information across domains and a domain-specific attribute space. Our model takes the encoded content features extracted from a given input and the attribute vectors sampled from the attribute space to produce diverse outputs at test time. To handle unpaired training data, we introduce a novel cross-cycle consistency loss based on disentangled representations. Qualitative results show that our model can generate diverse and realistic images on a wide range of tasks without paired training data. For quantitative comparisons, we measure realism with user study and diversity with a perceptual distance metric. We apply the proposed model to domain adaptation and show competitive performance when compared to the state-of-the-art on the MNIST-M and the LineMod datasets.

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Automatically describing video content with text description is challenging but important task, which has been attracting a lot of attention in computer vision community. Previous works mainly strive for the accuracy of the generated sentences, while ignoring the sentences diversity, which is inconsistent with human behavior. In this paper, we aim to caption each video with multiple descriptions and propose a novel framework. Concretely, for a given video, the intermediate latent variables of conventional encode-decode process are utilized as input to the conditional generative adversarial network (CGAN) with the purpose of generating diverse sentences. We adopt different CNNs as our generator that produces descriptions conditioned on latent variables and discriminator that assesses the quality of generated sentences. Simultaneously, a novel DCE metric is designed to assess the diverse captions. We evaluate our method on the benchmark datasets, where it demonstrates its ability to generate diverse descriptions and achieves superior results against other state-of-the-art methods.

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We present a new method to learn video representations from large-scale unlabeled video data. Ideally, this representation will be generic and transferable, directly usable for new tasks such as action recognition and zero or few-shot learning. We formulate unsupervised representation learning as a multi-modal, multi-task learning problem, where the representations are shared across different modalities via distillation. Further, we introduce the concept of loss function evolution by using an evolutionary search algorithm to automatically find optimal combination of loss functions capturing many (self-supervised) tasks and modalities. Thirdly, we propose an unsupervised representation evaluation metric using distribution matching to a large unlabeled dataset as a prior constraint, based on Zipf's law. This unsupervised constraint, which is not guided by any labeling, produces similar results to weakly-supervised, task-specific ones. The proposed unsupervised representation learning results in a single RGB network and outperforms previous methods. Notably, it is also more effective than several label-based methods (e.g., ImageNet), with the exception of large, fully labeled video datasets.

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For many computer vision applications such as image captioning, visual question answering, and person search, learning discriminative feature representations at both image and text level is an essential yet challenging problem. Its challenges originate from the large word variance in the text domain as well as the difficulty of accurately measuring the distance between the features of the two modalities. Most prior work focuses on the latter challenge, by introducing loss functions that help the network learn better feature representations but fail to account for the complexity of the textual input. With that in mind, we introduce TIMAM: a Text-Image Modality Adversarial Matching approach that learns modality-invariant feature representations using adversarial and cross-modal matching objectives. In addition, we demonstrate that BERT, a publicly-available language model that extracts word embeddings, can successfully be applied in the text-to-image matching domain. The proposed approach achieves state-of-the-art cross-modal matching performance on four widely-used publicly-available datasets resulting in absolute improvements ranging from 2% to 5% in terms of rank-1 accuracy.

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Most conditional generation tasks expect diverse outputs given a single conditional context. However, conditional generative adversarial networks (cGANs) often focus on the prior conditional information and ignore the input noise vectors, which contribute to the output variations. Recent attempts to resolve the mode collapse issue for cGANs are usually task-specific and computationally expensive. In this work, we propose a simple yet effective regularization term to address the mode collapse issue for cGANs. The proposed method explicitly maximizes the ratio of the distance between generated images with respect to the corresponding latent codes, thus encouraging the generators to explore more minor modes during training. This mode seeking regularization term is readily applicable to various conditional generation tasks without imposing training overhead or modifying the original network structures. We validate the proposed algorithm on three conditional image synthesis tasks including categorical generation, image-to-image translation, and text-to-image synthesis with different baseline models. Both qualitative and quantitative results demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed regularization method for improving diversity without loss of quality.

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Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs) can produce images of surprising complexity and realism, but are generally modeled to sample from a single latent source ignoring the explicit spatial interaction between multiple entities that could be present in a scene. Capturing such complex interactions between different objects in the world, including their relative scaling, spatial layout, occlusion, or viewpoint transformation is a challenging problem. In this work, we propose to model object composition in a GAN framework as a self-consistent composition-decomposition network. Our model is conditioned on the object images from their marginal distributions to generate a realistic image from their joint distribution by explicitly learning the possible interactions. We evaluate our model through qualitative experiments and user evaluations in both the scenarios when either paired or unpaired examples for the individual object images and the joint scenes are given during training. Our results reveal that the learned model captures potential interactions between the two object domains given as input to output new instances of composed scene at test time in a reasonable fashion.

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Unpaired image-to-image translation is the problem of mapping an image in the source domain to one in the target domain, without requiring corresponding image pairs. To ensure the translated images are realistically plausible, recent works, such as Cycle-GAN, demands this mapping to be invertible. While, this requirement demonstrates promising results when the domains are unimodal, its performance is unpredictable in a multi-modal scenario such as in an image segmentation task. This is because, invertibility does not necessarily enforce semantic correctness. To this end, we present a semantically-consistent GAN framework, dubbed Sem-GAN, in which the semantics are defined by the class identities of image segments in the source domain as produced by a semantic segmentation algorithm. Our proposed framework includes consistency constraints on the translation task that, together with the GAN loss and the cycle-constraints, enforces that the images when translated will inherit the appearances of the target domain, while (approximately) maintaining their identities from the source domain. We present experiments on several image-to-image translation tasks and demonstrate that Sem-GAN improves the quality of the translated images significantly, sometimes by more than 20% on the FCN score. Further, we show that semantic segmentation models, trained with synthetic images translated via Sem-GAN, leads to significantly better segmentation results than other variants.

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Image-to-image translation tasks have been widely investigated with Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs) and dual learning. However, existing models lack the ability to control the translated results in the target domain and their results usually lack of diversity in the sense that a fixed image usually leads to (almost) deterministic translation result. In this paper, we study a new problem, conditional image-to-image translation, which is to translate an image from the source domain to the target domain conditioned on a given image in the target domain. It requires that the generated image should inherit some domain-specific features of the conditional image from the target domain. Therefore, changing the conditional image in the target domain will lead to diverse translation results for a fixed input image from the source domain, and therefore the conditional input image helps to control the translation results. We tackle this problem with unpaired data based on GANs and dual learning. We twist two conditional translation models (one translation from A domain to B domain, and the other one from B domain to A domain) together for inputs combination and reconstruction while preserving domain independent features. We carry out experiments on men's faces from-to women's faces translation and edges to shoes&bags translations. The results demonstrate the effectiveness of our proposed method.

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Style transfer usually refers to the task of applying color and texture information from a specific style image to a given content image while preserving the structure of the latter. Here we tackle the more generic problem of semantic style transfer: given two unpaired collections of images, we aim to learn a mapping between the corpus-level style of each collection, while preserving semantic content shared across the two domains. We introduce XGAN ("Cross-GAN"), a dual adversarial autoencoder, which captures a shared representation of the common domain semantic content in an unsupervised way, while jointly learning the domain-to-domain image translations in both directions. We exploit ideas from the domain adaptation literature and define a semantic consistency loss which encourages the model to preserve semantics in the learned embedding space. We report promising qualitative results for the task of face-to-cartoon translation. The cartoon dataset we collected for this purpose is in the process of being released as a new benchmark for semantic style transfer.

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Generating novel, yet realistic, images of persons is a challenging task due to the complex interplay between the different image factors, such as the foreground, background and pose information. In this work, we aim at generating such images based on a novel, two-stage reconstruction pipeline that learns a disentangled representation of the aforementioned image factors and generates novel person images at the same time. First, a multi-branched reconstruction network is proposed to disentangle and encode the three factors into embedding features, which are then combined to re-compose the input image itself. Second, three corresponding mapping functions are learned in an adversarial manner in order to map Gaussian noise to the learned embedding feature space, for each factor respectively. Using the proposed framework, we can manipulate the foreground, background and pose of the input image, and also sample new embedding features to generate such targeted manipulations, that provide more control over the generation process. Experiments on Market-1501 and Deepfashion datasets show that our model does not only generate realistic person images with new foregrounds, backgrounds and poses, but also manipulates the generated factors and interpolates the in-between states. Another set of experiments on Market-1501 shows that our model can also be beneficial for the person re-identification task.

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Person re-identification (re-ID) models trained on one domain often fail to generalize well to another. In our attempt, we present a "learning via translation" framework. In the baseline, we translate the labeled images from source to target domain in an unsupervised manner. We then train re-ID models with the translated images by supervised methods. Yet, being an essential part of this framework, unsupervised image-image translation suffers from the information loss of source-domain labels during translation. Our motivation is two-fold. First, for each image, the discriminative cues contained in its ID label should be maintained after translation. Second, given the fact that two domains have entirely different persons, a translated image should be dissimilar to any of the target IDs. To this end, we propose to preserve two types of unsupervised similarities, 1) self-similarity of an image before and after translation, and 2) domain-dissimilarity of a translated source image and a target image. Both constraints are implemented in the similarity preserving generative adversarial network (SPGAN) which consists of a Siamese network and a CycleGAN. Through domain adaptation experiment, we show that images generated by SPGAN are more suitable for domain adaptation and yield consistent and competitive re-ID accuracy on two large-scale datasets.

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