Feature-agnostic Low-cost Place Recognition for Appearance-based Mapping

S. Kazmi, M. Mohamed, and B. Mertsching


The agentís ability to locate itself in an unfamiliar environment is essential for a reliable navigation. To address this challenge, place recognition methods are widely adopted. A common trend among most of these methods is that they are either tailored to work in specific environments or need prior training overhead. Whereas, others demand extreme computational resources, such as CNNs. In this paper, we analyze the existing GSOM-based place recognition framework and investigate the question of translating the system to other feature spaces, such as HOG, for low-cost place recognition. The experiments performed on four challenging sequences demonstrate the algorithmís ability to learn the representation of the new feature space without parameter tuning, provided the scaling factor along each dimension of the descriptor is taken into account. This highlights the feature-agnostic characteristic of the algorithm. We further observed that despite the low dimensionality of the HOG descriptor, the algorithm shows comparable place recognition results to the gist features, while offering threefold speed-ups in execution time.