Vision Transformer with Convolutions Architecture Search

20 Mar 2022  ·  Haichao Zhang, Kuangrong Hao, Witold Pedrycz, Lei Gao, Xuesong Tang, Bing Wei ·

Transformers exhibit great advantages in handling computer vision tasks. They model image classification tasks by utilizing a multi-head attention mechanism to process a series of patches consisting of split images. However, for complex tasks, Transformer in computer vision not only requires inheriting a bit of dynamic attention and global context, but also needs to introduce features concerning noise reduction, shifting, and scaling invariance of objects. Therefore, here we take a step forward to study the structural characteristics of Transformer and convolution and propose an architecture search method-Vision Transformer with Convolutions Architecture Search (VTCAS). The high-performance backbone network searched by VTCAS introduces the desirable features of convolutional neural networks into the Transformer architecture while maintaining the benefits of the multi-head attention mechanism. The searched block-based backbone network can extract feature maps at different scales. These features are compatible with a wider range of visual tasks, such as image classification (32 M parameters, 82.0% Top-1 accuracy on ImageNet-1K) and object detection (50.4% mAP on COCO2017). The proposed topology based on the multi-head attention mechanism and CNN adaptively associates relational features of pixels with multi-scale features of objects. It enhances the robustness of the neural network for object recognition, especially in the low illumination indoor scene.

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