On the Equivalency, Substitutability, and Flexibility of Synthetic Data

Published: 09 Apr 2024, Last Modified: 11 Apr 2024SynData4CVEveryoneRevisionsBibTeXCC BY 4.0
Keywords: Synthetic Data, Equivalency, Substitutability, Flexibility, Multi-person Tracking
TL;DR: We empirically study the effectiveness of synthetic data in real-world scenarios, with focus on interesting properties including equivalency, substitutability, and flexibility.
Abstract: We study, from an empirical standpoint, the efficacy of synthetic data in real-world scenarios. Leveraging synthetic data for training perception models has become a key strategy embraced by the community due to its efficiency, scalability, perfect annotations, and low costs. Despite proven advantages, few studies put their stress on how to efficiently generate synthetic datasets to solve real-world problems and to what extent synthetic data can reduce the effort for real-world data collection. To answer the questions, we systematically investigate several interesting properties of synthetic data -- the equivalency of synthetic data to real-world data, the substitutability of synthetic data for real data, and the flexibility of synthetic data generators to close up domain gaps. Leveraging the M3Act synthetic data generator, we conduct experiments on DanceTrack and MOT17. Our results suggest that synthetic data not only enhances model performance but also demonstrates substitutability for real data, with 60% to 80% replacement without performance loss. In addition, our study of the impact of synthetic data distributions on downstream performance reveals the importance of flexible data generators in narrowing domain gaps for improved model adaptability.
Submission Number: 29