ChangeNet: A Deep Learning Architecture for Visual Change Detection

The increasing urban population in cities necessitates the need for the development of smart cities that can offer better services to its citizens. Drone technology plays a crucial role in the smart city environment and is already involved in a number of functions in smart cities such as traffic control and construction monitoring. A major challenge in fast growing cities is the encroachment of public spaces. A robotic solution using visual change detection can be used for such purposes. For the detection of encroachment, a drone can monitor outdoor urban areas over a period of time to infer the visual changes. Visual change detection is a higher level inference task that aims at accurately identifying variations between a reference image (historical) and a new test image depicting the current scenario. In case of images, the challenges are complex considering the variations caused by environmental conditions that are actually unchanged events. Human mind interprets the change by comparing the current status with historical data at intelligence level rather than using only visual information. In this paper, we present a deep architecture called ChangeNet for detecting changes between pairs of images and express the same semantically (label the change). A parallel deep convolutional neural network (CNN) architecture for localizing and identifying the changes between image pair has been proposed in this paper. The architecture is evaluated with VL-CMU-CD street view change detection, TSUNAMI and Google Street View (GSV) datasets that resemble drone captured images. The performance of the model for different lighting and seasonal conditions are experimented quantitatively and qualitatively. The result shows that ChangeNet outperforms the state of the art by achieving 98.3% pixel accuracy, 77.35% object based Intersection over Union (IoU) and 88.9% area under Receiver Operating Characteristics (RoC) curve.

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