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Automatic High Resolution Wire Segmentation and Removal

Mang Tik Chiu · Xuaner Zhang · Zijun Wei · Yuqian Zhou · Eli Shechtman · Connelly Barnes · Zhe Lin · Florian Kainz · Sohrab Amirghodsi · Humphrey Shi

West Building Exhibit Halls ABC 209


Wires and powerlines are common visual distractions that often undermine the aesthetics of photographs. The manual process of precisely segmenting and removing them is extremely tedious and may take up to hours, especially on high-resolution photos where wires may span the entire space. In this paper, we present an automatic wire clean-up system that eases the process of wire segmentation and removal/inpainting to within a few seconds. We observe several unique challenges: wires are thin, lengthy, and sparse. These are rare properties of subjects that common segmentation tasks cannot handle, especially in high-resolution images. We thus propose a two-stage method that leverages both global and local context to accurately segment wires in high-resolution images efficiently, and a tile-based inpainting strategy to remove the wires given our predicted segmentation masks. We also introduce the first wire segmentation benchmark dataset, WireSegHR. Finally, we demonstrate quantitatively and qualitatively that our wire clean-up system enables fully automated wire removal for great generalization to various wire appearances.

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