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Workshop: 4th Workshop on Self-Supervised Learning: Theory and Practice

Augmentation-aware Self-Supervised Learning with Conditioned Projector

Marcin Przewięźlikowski · Mateusz Pyla · Bartosz Zieliński · Bartłomiej Twardowski · Jacek Tabor · Marek Śmieja


Self-supervised learning (SSL) is a powerful technique for learning robust representations from unlabeled data. By learning to remain invariant to applied data augmentations, methods such as SimCLR and MoCo are able to reach quality on par with supervised approaches. However, this invariance may be harmful to solving some downstream tasks which depend on traits affected by augmentations used during pretraining, such as color. In this paper, we propose to foster sensitivity to such characteristics in the representation space by modifying the projector network, a common component of self-supervised architectures. Specifically, we supplement the projector with information about augmentations applied to images. In order for the projector to take advantage of this auxiliary conditioning when solving the SSL task, the feature extractor learns to preserve the augmentation information in its representations. Our approach, coined Conditional Augmentation-aware Self-supervised Learning (CASSLE), is directly applicable to typical joint-embedding SSL methods regardless of their objective functions. Moreover, it does not require major changes in the network architecture or prior knowledge of downstream tasks. In addition to an analysis of sensitivity towards different data augmentations, we conduct a series of experiments, which show that CASSLE improves over various SSL methods, reaching state-of-the-art performance in multiple downstream tasks.

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