Fixing the train-test resolution discrepancy

Touvron, Hugo, Vedaldi, Andrea, Douze, Matthijs, Jegou, Herve

Neural Information Processing Systems 

Data-augmentation is key to the training of neural networks for image classification. This paper first shows that existing augmentations induce a significant discrepancy between the size of the objects seen by the classifier at train and test time: in fact, a lower train resolution improves the classification at test time! We then propose a simple strategy to optimize the classifier performance, that employs different train and test resolutions. It relies on a computationally cheap fine-tuning of the network at the test resolution. This enables training strong classifiers using small training images, and therefore significantly reduce the training time.