Heuristic Vision Pre-Training with Self-Supervised and Supervised Multi-Task Learning

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Zhiming Qian


To mimic human vision with the way of recognizing the diverse and open world, foundation vision models are much critical. While recent techniques of self-supervised learning show the promising potentiality of this mission, we argue that signals from labelled data are also important for common-sense recognition, and properly chosen pre-text tasks can facilitate the efficiency of vision representation learning. To this end, we propose a novel pre-training framework by adopting both self-supervised and supervised visual pre-text tasks in a multi-task manner. Specifically, given an image, we take a heuristic way by considering its intrinsic style properties, inside objects with their locations and correlations, and how it looks like in 3D space for basic visual understanding. However, large-scale object bounding boxes and correlations are usually hard to achieve. Alternatively, we develop a hybrid method by leveraging both multi-label classification and self-supervised learning. On the one hand, under the multi-label supervision, the pre-trained model can explore the detailed information of an image, e.g., image types, objects, and part of semantic relations. On the other hand, self-supervised learning tasks, with respect to Masked Image Modeling (MIM) and contrastive learning, can help the model learn pixel details and patch correlations. Results show that our pre-trained models can deliver results on par with or better than state-of-the-art (SOTA) results on multiple visual tasks. For example, with a vanilla Swin-B backbone, we achieve 85.3\% top-1 accuracy on ImageNet-1K classification, 47.9 box AP on COCO object detection for Mask R-CNN, and 50.6 mIoU on ADE-20K semantic segmentation when using Upernet. The performance shows the ability of our vision foundation model to serve general purpose vision tasks.

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