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Density-driven Regularization for Out-of-distribution Detection

Wenjian Huang · Hao Wang · Jiahao Xia · Chengyan Wang · Jianguo Zhang


Detecting out-of-distribution (OOD) samples is essential for reliably deploying deep learning classifiers in open-world applications. However, existing detectors relying on discriminative probability suffer from the overconfident posterior estimate for OOD data. Other reported approaches either impose strong unproven parametric assumptions to estimate OOD sample density or develop empirical detectors lacking clear theoretical motivations. To address these issues, we propose a theoretical probabilistic framework for OOD detection in deep classification networks, in which two regularization constraints are constructed to reliably calibrate and estimate sample density to identify OOD. Specifically, the density consistency regularization enforces the agreement between analytical and empirical densities of observable low-dimensional categorical labels. The contrastive distribution regularization separates the densities between in distribution (ID) and distribution-deviated samples. A simple and robust implementation algorithm is also provided, which can be used for any pre-trained neural network classifiers. To the best of our knowledge, we have conducted the most extensive evaluations and comparisons on computer vision benchmarks. The results show that our method significantly outperforms state-of-the-art detectors, and even achieves comparable or better performance than methods utilizing additional large-scale outlier exposure datasets.

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