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Neural Sign Actors: A Diffusion Model for 3D Sign Language Production from Text

Vasileios Baltatzis · Rolandos Alexandros Potamias · Evangelos Ververas · Guanxiong Sun · Jiankang Deng · Stefanos Zafeiriou

Arch 4A-E Poster #176
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Wed 19 Jun 10:30 a.m. PDT — noon PDT


Sign Languages (SL) serve as the predominant mode of communication for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing communities. The advent of deep learning has aided numerous methods in SL recognition and translation, achieving remarkable results. However, Sign Language Production (SLP) poses a challenge for the computer vision community as the motions generated must be realistic and have precise semantic meanings. Most SLP methods rely on 2D data, thus impeding their ability to attain a necessary level of realism. In this work, we propose a diffusion-based SLP model trained on a curated large-scale dataset of 4D signing avatars and their corresponding text transcripts. The proposed method can generate dynamic sequences of 3D avatars from an unconstrained domain of discourse using a diffusion process formed on a novel and anatomically informed graph neural network defined on the SMPL-X body skeleton. Through a series of quantitative and qualitative experiments, we show that the proposed method considerably outperforms previous methods of SLP. We believe that this work presents an important and necessary step towards realistic neural sign avatars, bridging the communication gap between Deaf and hearing communities. The code, method and generated data will be made publicly available.

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