Image Classification Python* Sample Async

This sample demonstrates how to run the Image Classification sample application with inference executed in the asynchronous mode.

The sample demonstrates how to use the new Infer Request API of Inference Engine in applications. Refer to Integrate the Inference Engine New Request API with Your Application for details. The sample demonstrates how to build and execute an inference request 10 times in the asynchronous mode on example of classifications networks. The asynchronous mode might increase the throughput of the pictures.

The batch mode is an independent attribute on the asynchronous mode. Asynchronous mode works efficiently with any batch size.

How It Works

Upon the start-up, the sample application reads command line parameters and loads specified network and input images (or a folder with images) to the Inference Engine plugin. The batch size of the network is set according to the number of read images.

Then, the sample creates an inference request object and assigns completion callback for it. In scope of the completion callback handling the inference request is executed again.

After that, the application starts inference for the first infer request and waits of 10th inference request execution being completed.

When inference is done, the application outputs data to the standard output stream.

NOTE: By default, Inference Engine samples and demos expect input with BGR channels order. If you trained your model to work with RGB order, you need to manually rearrange the default channels order in the sample or demo application or reconvert your model using the Model Optimizer tool with --reverse_input_channels argument specified. For more information about the argument, refer to When to Reverse Input Channels section of Converting a Model Using General Conversion Parameters.


Running the application with the -h option yields the following usage message:

python3 -h

The command yields the following usage message:

usage: [-h] -m MODEL -i INPUT [INPUT ...]
[-d DEVICE] [--labels LABELS]
-h, --help Show this help message and exit.
-m MODEL, --model MODEL
Required. Path to an .xml file with a trained model.
-i INPUT [INPUT ...], --input INPUT [INPUT ...]
Required. Path to a folder with images or path to an
image files
Optional. Required for CPU custom layers. Absolute
path to a shared library with the kernels
-d DEVICE, --device DEVICE
Optional. Specify the target device to infer on; CPU,
GPU, FPGA, HDDL or MYRIAD is acceptable. The sample
will look for a suitable plugin for device specified.
Default value is CPU
--labels LABELS Optional. Labels mapping file
-nt NUMBER_TOP, --number_top NUMBER_TOP
Optional. Number of top results

Running the application with the empty list of options yields the usage message given above and an error message.

To run the sample, you can use AlexNet and GoogLeNet or other image classification models. You can download the pre-trained models with the OpenVINO Model Downloader or from

NOTE: Before running the sample with a trained model, make sure the model is converted to the Inference Engine format (*.xml + *.bin) using the Model Optimizer tool.

You can do inference of an image using a trained AlexNet network on FPGA with fallback to CPU using the following command:

python3 -i <path_to_image>/cat.bmp -m <path_to_model>/alexnet_fp32.xml -nt 5 -d HETERO:FPGA,CPU

Sample Output

By default, the application outputs top-10 inference results for each infer request. It also provides throughput value measured in frames per seconds.

See Also