Iterative Answer Prediction with Pointer-Augmented Multimodal Transformers for TextVQA

Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR)


Many visual scenes contain text that carries crucial information, and it is thus essential to understand text in images for downstream reasoning tasks. For example, a deep water label on a warning sign warns people about the danger in the scene. Recent work has explored the TextVQA task that requires reading and understanding text in images to answer a question. However, existing approaches for TextVQA are mostly based on custom pairwise fusion mechanisms between a pair of two modalities and are restricted to a single prediction step by casting TextVQA as a classification task. In this work, we propose a novel model for the TextVQA task based on a multimodal transformer architecture accompanied by a rich representation for text in images. Our model naturally fuses different modalities homogeneously by embedding them into a common semantic space where self-attention is applied to model inter- and intra- modality context. Furthermore, it enables iterative answer decoding with a dynamic pointer network, allowing the model to form an answer through multi-step prediction instead of one-step classification. Our model outperforms existing approaches on three benchmark datasets for the TextVQA task by a large margin.

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