Grill, Jean-Bastien, Strub, Florian, Altché, Florent, Tallec, Corentin, Richemond, Pierre H., Buchatskaya, Elena, Doersch, Carl, Pires, Bernardo Avila, Guo, Zhaohan Daniel, Azar, Mohammad Gheshlaghi, Piot, Bilal, Kavukcuoglu, Koray, Munos, Rémi, Valko, Michal
We introduce Bootstrap Your Own Latent (BYOL), a new approach to self-supervised image representation learning. BYOL relies on two neural networks, referred to as online and target networks, that interact and learn from each other. From an augmented view of an image, we train the online network to predict the target network representation of the same image under a different augmented view. At the same time, we update the target network with a slow-moving average of the online network. While state-of-the art methods rely on negative pairs, BYOL achieves a new state of the art without them. BYOL reaches $74.3\%$ top-1 classification accuracy on ImageNet using a linear evaluation with a ResNet-50 architecture and $79.6\%$ with a larger ResNet. We show that BYOL performs on par or better than the current state of the art on both transfer and semi-supervised benchmarks. Our implementation and pretrained models are given on GitHub.
Representation learning has significantly been developed with the advance of contrastive learning methods. Most of those methods have benefited from various data augmentations that are carefully designated to maintain their identities so that the images transformed from the same instance can still be retrieved. However, those carefully designed transformations limited us to further explore the novel patterns exposed by other transformations. Meanwhile, as found in our experiments, the strong augmentations distorted the images' structures, resulting in difficult retrieval. Thus, we propose a general framework called Contrastive Learning with Stronger Augmentations~(CLSA) to complement current contrastive learning approaches. Here, the distribution divergence between the weakly and strongly augmented images over the representation bank is adopted to supervise the retrieval of strongly augmented queries from a pool of instances. Experiments on the ImageNet dataset and downstream datasets showed the information from the strongly augmented images can significantly boost the performance. For example, CLSA achieves top-1 accuracy of 76.2% on ImageNet with a standard ResNet-50 architecture with a single-layer classifier fine-tuned, which is almost the same level as 76.5% of supervised results. The code and pre-trained models are available in https://github.com/maple-research-lab/CLSA.
We investigate a strategy for improving the computational efficiency of contrastive learning of visual representations by leveraging a small amount of supervised information during pre-training. We propose a semi-supervised loss, SuNCEt, based on noise-contrastive estimation, that aims to distinguish examples of different classes in addition to the self-supervised instance-wise pretext tasks. We find that SuNCEt can be used to match the semi-supervised learning accuracy of previous contrastive approaches with significantly less computational effort. Our main insight is that leveraging even a small amount of labeled data during pre-training, and not only during fine-tuning, provides an important signal that can significantly accelerate contrastive learning of visual representations.
Contrastive representation learning has shown to be an effective way of learning representations from unlabeled data. However, much progress has been made in vision domains relying on data augmentations carefully designed using domain knowledge. In this work, we propose i-Mix, a simple yet effective regularization strategy for improving contrastive representation learning in both vision and non-vision domains. We cast contrastive learning as training a non-parametric classifier by assigning a unique virtual class to each data in a batch. Then, data instances are mixed in both the input and virtual label spaces, providing more augmented data during training. In experiments, we demonstrate that i-Mix consistently improves the quality of self-supervised representations across domains, resulting in significant performance gains on downstream tasks. Furthermore, we confirm its regularization effect via extensive ablation studies across model and dataset sizes.
Self-supervised representation learning has seen remarkable progress in the last few years. More recently, contrastive instance learning has shown impressive results compared to its supervised learning counterparts. However, even with the ever increased interest in contrastive instance learning, it is still largely unclear why these methods work so well. In this paper, we aim to unravel some of the mysteries behind their success, which are the good practices. Through an extensive empirical analysis, we hope to not only provide insights but also lay out a set of best practices that led to the success of recent work in self-supervised representation learning.