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Conditional Affordance Learning for Driving in Urban Environments

by   Axel Sauer, et al.

Most existing approaches to autonomous driving fall into one of two categories: modular pipelines, that build an extensive model of the environment, and imitation learning approaches, that map images directly to control outputs. A recently proposed third paradigm, direct perception, aims to combine the advantages of both by using a neural network to learn appropriate low-dimensional intermediate representations. However, existing direct perception approaches are restricted to simple highway situations, lacking the ability to navigate intersections, stop at traffic lights or respect speed limits. In this work, we propose a direct perception approach which maps video input to intermediate representations suitable for autonomous navigation in complex urban environments given high-level directional inputs. Compared to state-of-the-art reinforcement and conditional imitation learning approaches, we achieve an improvement of up to 68 challenging CARLA simulation benchmark. In addition, our approach is the first to handle traffic lights, speed signs and smooth car-following, resulting in a significant reduction of traffic accidents.


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