Learning to rank images for complex queries in concept-based search

Chaoran Cui, Jialie Shen, Zhumin Chen, Shuaiqiang Wang, Jun Ma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Concept-based image search is an emerging search paradigm that utilizes a set of concepts as intermediate semantic descriptors of images to bridge the semantic gap. Typically, a user query is rather complex and cannot be well described using a single concept. However, it is less effective to tackle such complex queries by simply aggregating the individual search results for the constituent concepts. In this paper, we propose to introduce the learning to rank techniques to concept-based image search for complex queries. With freely available social tagged images, we first build concept detectors by jointly leveraging the heterogeneous visual features. Then, to formulate the image relevance, we explicitly model the individual weight of each constituent concept in a complex query. The dependence among constituent concepts, as well as the relatedness between query and non-query concepts, are also considered through modeling the pairwise concept correlations in a factorization way. Finally, we train our model to directly optimize the image ranking performance for complex queries under a pairwise learning to rank framework. Extensive experiments on two benchmark datasets well verified the promise of our approach.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-28
Early online date12 Apr 2017
Publication statusPublished - 24 Jan 2018


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