VLDeformer: Vision-Language Decomposed Transformer for Fast Cross-Modal Retrieval [article]

Lisai Zhang and Hongfa Wu and Qingcai Chen and Yimeng Deng and Zhonghua Li and Dejiang Kong and Zhao Cao and Joanna Siebert and Yunpeng Han
2021 arXiv   pre-print
Cross-model retrieval has emerged as one of the most important upgrades for text-only search engines (SE). Recently, with powerful representation for pairwise text-image inputs via early interaction, the accuracy of vision-language (VL) transformers has outperformed existing methods for text-image retrieval. However, when the same paradigm is used for inference, the efficiency of the VL transformers is still too low to be applied in a real cross-modal SE. Inspired by the mechanism of human
more » ... ing and using cross-modal knowledge, this paper presents a novel Vision-Language Decomposed Transformer (VLDeformer), which greatly increases the efficiency of VL transformers while maintaining their outstanding accuracy. By the proposed method, the cross-model retrieval is separated into two stages: the VL transformer learning stage, and the VL decomposition stage. The latter stage plays the role of single modal indexing, which is to some extent like the term indexing of a text SE. The model learns cross-modal knowledge from early-interaction pre-training and is then decomposed into an individual encoder. The decomposition requires only small target datasets for supervision and achieves both 1000+ times acceleration and less than 0.6% average recall drop. VLDeformer also outperforms state-of-the-art visual-semantic embedding methods on COCO and Flickr30k.
arXiv:2110.11338v3 fatcat:nz55dm26ifh43jqchsnt3xd3km