Mask Encoding for Single Shot Instance Segmentation

CVPR 2020

Authors: Rufeng Zhang, Zhi Tian, Chunhua Shen, Mingyu You, Youliang Yan Description: To date, instance segmentation is dominated by two-stage methods, as pioneered by Mask R-CNN. In contrast, one-stage alternatives cannot compete with Mask R-CNN in mask AP, mainly due to the difficulty of compactly representing masks, making the design of one-stage methods very challenging. In this work, we propose a simple single-shot instance segmentation framework, termed mask encoding based instance segmentation (MEInst). Instead of predicting the two-dimensional mask directly, MEInst distills it into a compact and fixed-dimensional representation vector, which allows the instance segmentation task to be incorporated into one-stage bounding-box detectors and results in a simple yet efficient instance segmentation framework. The proposed one-stage MEInst achieves 36.4% in mask AP with single-model (ResNeXt-101-FPN backbone) and single-scale testing on the MS-COCO benchmark. We show that the much simpler and flexible one-stage instance segmentation method, can also achieve competitive performance. This framework can be easily adapted for other instance-level recognition tasks. Code is available at: