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Detecting failure modes in image reconstructions with interval neural network uncertainty

Oala, Luis; Heiß, Cosmas; Macdonald, Jan; März, Maximilian; Kutyniok, Gitta; Samek, Wojciech

Purpose: The quantitative detection of failure modes is important for making deep neural networks reliable and usable at scale. We consider three examples for common failure modes in image reconstruction and demonstrate the potential of uncertainty quantification as a fine-grained alarm system. Methods: We propose a deterministic, modular and lightweight approach called Interval Neural Network (INN) that produces fast and easy to interpret uncertainty scores for deep neural networks. Importantly, INNs can be constructed post hoc for already trained prediction networks. We compare it against state-of-the-art baseline methods (MCDrop, ProbOut). Results: We demonstrate on controlled, synthetic inverse problems the capacity of INNs to capture uncertainty due to noise as well as directional error information. On a real-world inverse problem with human CT scans, we can show that INNs produce uncertainty scores which improve the detection of all considered failure modes compared to the baseline methods. Conclusion: Interval Neural Networks offer a promising tool to expose weaknesses of deep image reconstruction models and ultimately make them more reliable. The fact that they can be applied post hoc to equip already trained deep neural network models with uncertainty scores makes them particularly interesting for deployment.
Published in: International Journal of Computer Assisted Radiology and Surgery, 10.1007/s11548-021-02482-2, Springer Nature