Active Learning and the 2023 SPIE Conference

by Aimee Moses, Kelsey O’Haire, and Chris Bogart

At Expedition Technology (EXP), we ride the cutting edge of research to develop the most impactful solutions to our customers’ most difficult challenges. This month, three members of the Intelligent Classification in 3D (IC3D) team (Aimee Moses, Kelsey O’Haire, and Chris Bogart) attended the SPIE Defense and Commercial Sensing conference in Orlando, Florida to present our recent advances and learn about the latest developments by others in the research community.

One of IC3D’s primary objectives is to design and build a solution for identifying and classifying objects in Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) and Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) 3D point clouds. Training effective object detectors requires a large amount of labeled point cloud data, which can be hard to come by. To address this challenge, we are applying a strategy called active learning, outlined in the figure below, which provides a framework for efficiently labeling data by identifying the most valuable data samples to label first.

Aimee Moses presented the results of applying a variety of active learning approaches to the IC3D task in a talk titled, “Diversity-Based Active Learning: Creating a Representative Object Detection Dataset in 3D Point Clouds.” The accompanying paper the team wrote is available in the conference proceedings. We anticipate our findings will be applicable to a wide range of current and future projects at EXP and should be applicable to a broad set of machine learning projects with a lot of data, but very little of it labeled.

In addition to Aimee’s presentation, we had the opportunity to listen to talks on topics ranging from unsupervised representation learning to underwater fish detection to automated classification of misinformation and more. By our calculations, between the 3 of us from EXP who attended the conference, we heard over 150 presentations! We are excited to share the new techniques and applications we learned about with the rest of our EXP colleagues and leverage them for the benefit of our customers.