Deep Edge-Aware Saliency Detection

Jing Zhang, Yuchao Dai, Fatih Porikli, Mingyi He

There has been profound progress in visual saliency thanks to the deep learning architectures, however, there still exist three major challenges that hinder the detection performance for scenes with complex compositions, multiple salient objects, and salient objects of diverse scales. In particular, output maps of the existing methods remain low in spatial resolution causing blurred edges due to the stride and pooling operations, networks often neglect descriptive statistical and handcrafted priors that have potential to complement saliency detection results, and deep features at different layers stay mainly desolate waiting to be effectively fused to handle multi-scale salient objects. In this paper, we tackle these issues by a new fully convolutional neural network that jointly learns salient edges and saliency labels in an end-to-end fashion. Our framework first employs convolutional layers that reformulate the detection task as a dense labeling problem, then integrates handcrafted saliency features in a hierarchical manner into lower and higher levels of the deep network to leverage available information for multi-scale response, and finally refines the saliency map through dilated convolutions by imposing context. In this way, the salient edge priors are efficiently incorporated and the output resolution is significantly improved while keeping the memory requirements low, leading to cleaner and sharper object boundaries. Extensive experimental analyses on ten benchmarks demonstrate that our framework achieves consistently superior performance and attains robustness for complex scenes in comparison to the very recent state-of-the-art approaches.

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