Table Structure Recognition using Top-Down and Bottom-Up Cues

by   Sachin Raja, et al.

Tables are information-rich structured objects in document images. While significant work has been done in localizing tables as graphic objects in document images, only limited attempts exist on table structure recognition. Most existing literature on structure recognition depends on extraction of meta-features from the PDF document or on the optical character recognition (OCR) models to extract low-level layout features from the image. However, these methods fail to generalize well because of the absence of meta-features or errors made by the OCR when there is a significant variance in table layouts and text organization. In our work, we focus on tables that have complex structures, dense content, and varying layouts with no dependency on meta-features and/or OCR. We present an approach for table structure recognition that combines cell detection and interaction modules to localize the cells and predict their row and column associations with other detected cells. We incorporate structural constraints as additional differential components to the loss function for cell detection. We empirically validate our method on the publicly available real-world datasets - ICDAR-2013, ICDAR-2019 (cTDaR) archival, UNLV, SciTSR, SciTSR-COMP, TableBank, and PubTabNet. Our attempt opens up a new direction for table structure recognition by combining top-down (table cells detection) and bottom-up (structure recognition) cues in visually understanding the tables.



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