Ramakrishna Vedantam, Xiao Lin, Tanmay Batra, Lawrence Zitnick


Common sense is essential for building intelligent machines. While some commonsense knowledge is explicitly stated in human-generated text and can be learnt by mining the web, much of it is unwritten. It is often unnecessary and even unnatural to write about commonsense facts. While unwritten, this commonsense knowledge is not unseen! The visual world around us is full of structure modeled by commonsense knowledge. Can machines learn common sense simply by observing our visual world? Unfortunately, this requires automatic and accurate detection of objects, their attributes, poses, and interactions between objects, which remain challenging problems. Our key insight is that while visual common sense is depicted in visual content, it is the semantic features that are relevant and not low-level pixel information. In other words, photorealism is not necessary to learn common sense. We explore the use of human-generated abstract scenes made from clipart for learning common sense. In particular, we reason about the plausibility of an interaction or relation between a pair of nouns by measuring the similarity of the relation and nouns with other relations and nouns we have seen in abstract scenes. We show that the commonsense knowledge we learn is complementary to what can be learnt from sources of text.


Xiao Lin-updated

Xiao Lin

Ramakrishna Vedantam-updated

Ramakrishna Vedantam

Publication Details

Date of publication:
May 4, 2015
International Conference on Computer Vision (ICCV)
Page number(s):