Does Your Model Know the Digit 6 is Not a Cat? A Less Biased Evaluation of “Outlier” Detectors

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Authors Alireza Shafaei, Mark W. Schmidt, James J. Little
Journal/Conference Name ArXiv
Paper Category
Paper Abstract In the real world, a learning system could receive an input that looks nothing like anything it has seen during training, and this can lead to unpredictable behaviour. We thus need to know whether any given input belongs to the population distribution of the training data to prevent unpredictable behaviour in deployed systems. A recent surge of interest on this problem has led to the development of sophisticated techniques in the deep learning literature. However, due to the absence of a standardized problem formulation or an exhaustive evaluation, it is not evident if we can rely on these methods in practice. What makes this problem different from a typical supervised learning setting is that we cannot model the diversity of out-of-distribution samples in practice. The distribution of outliers used in training may not be the same as the distribution of outliers encountered in the application. Therefore, classical approaches that learn inliers vs. outliers with only two datasets can yield optimistic results. We introduce OD-test, a three-dataset evaluation scheme as a practical and more reliable strategy to assess progress on this problem. The OD-test benchmark provides a straightforward means of comparison for methods that address the out-of-distribution sample detection problem. We present an exhaustive evaluation of a broad set of methods from related areas on image classification tasks. Furthermore, we show that for realistic applications of high-dimensional images, the existing methods have low accuracy. Our analysis reveals areas of strength and weakness of each method.
Date of publication 2018
Code Programming Language PyTorch
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