SMART Frame Selection for Action Recognition


Action recognition is computationally expensive. In this paper, we address the problem of frame selection to improve the accuracy of action recognition. In particular, we show that selecting good frames helps in action recognition performance even in the trimmed videos domain. Recent work has successfully leveraged frame selection for long, untrimmed videos, where much of the content is not relevant, and easy to discard. In this work, however, we focus on the more standard short, trimmed action recognition problem. We argue that good frame selection can not only reduce the computational cost of action recognition but also increase the accuracy by getting rid of frames that are hard to classify. In contrast to previous work, we propose a method that instead of selecting frames by considering one at a time, considers them jointly. This results in a more efficient selection, where “good” frames are more effectively distributed over the video, like snapshots that tell a story. We call the proposed frame selection SMART and we test it in combination with different backbone architectures and on multiple benchmarks (Kinetics, Something-something, UCF101). We show that the SMART frame selection consistently improves the accuracy compared to other frame selection strategies while reducing the computational cost by a factor of 4 to 10 times. Additionally, we show that when the primary goal is recognition performance, our selection strategy can improve over recent state-of-the-art models and frame selection strategies on various benchmarks (UCF101, HMDB51, FCVID, and ActivityNet).

Authors: Shreyank N Gowda , Marcus Rohrbach, Laura Sevilla-Lara

The paper has been accepted in AAAI-21! The full paper can be found here.

If you find our work useful please cite:


title={SMART Frame Selection for Action Recognition},

author={Gowda, Shreyank N and Rohrbach, Marcus and Sevilla-Lara, Laura},

journal={arXiv preprint arXiv:2012.10671},




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