skip to main content

Title: Singular Value Perturbation and Deep Network Optimization
Abstract We develop new theoretical results on matrix perturbation to shed light on the impact of architecture on the performance of a deep network. In particular, we explain analytically what deep learning practitioners have long observed empirically: the parameters of some deep architectures (e.g., residual networks, ResNets, and Dense networks, DenseNets) are easier to optimize than others (e.g., convolutional networks, ConvNets). Building on our earlier work connecting deep networks with continuous piecewise-affine splines, we develop an exact local linear representation of a deep network layer for a family of modern deep networks that includes ConvNets at one end of a spectrum and ResNets, DenseNets, and other networks with skip connections at the other. For regression and classification tasks that optimize the squared-error loss, we show that the optimization loss surface of a modern deep network is piecewise quadratic in the parameters, with local shape governed by the singular values of a matrix that is a function of the local linear representation. We develop new perturbation results for how the singular values of matrices of this sort behave as we add a fraction of the identity and multiply by certain diagonal matrices. A direct application of our perturbation results explains analytically why a network with skip connections (such as a ResNet or DenseNet) is easier to optimize than a ConvNet: thanks to its more stable singular values and smaller condition number, the local loss surface of such a network is less erratic, less eccentric, and features local minima that are more accommodating to gradient-based optimization. Our results also shed new light on the impact of different nonlinear activation functions on a deep network’s singular values, regardless of its architecture.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
1838177 1730574 1911094
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ;
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Constructive Approximation
Page Range / eLocation ID:
807 to 852
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Neural architecture search (NAS) is a promising technique to design efficient and high-performance deep neural networks (DNNs). As the performance requirements of ML applications grow continuously, the hardware accelerators start playing a central role in DNN design. This trend makes NAS even more complicated and time-consuming for most real applications. This paper proposes FLASH, a very fast NAS methodology that co-optimizes the DNN accuracy and performance on a real hardware platform. As the main theoretical contribution, we first propose the NN-Degree, an analytical metric to quantify the topological characteristics of DNNs with skip connections (e.g., DenseNets, ResNets, Wide-ResNets, and MobileNets). The newly proposed NN-Degree allows us to do training-free NAS within one second and build an accuracy predictor by training as few as 25 samples out of a vast search space with more than 63 billion configurations. Second, by performing inference on the target hardware, we fine-tune and validate our analytical models to estimate the latency, area, and energy consumption of various DNN architectures while executing standard ML datasets. Third, we construct a hierarchical algorithm based on simplicial homology global optimization (SHGO) to optimize the model-architecture co-design process, while considering the area, latency, and energy consumption of the target hardware. We demonstrate that, compared to the state-of-the-art NAS approaches, our proposed hierarchical SHGO-based algorithm enables more than four orders of magnitude speedup (specifically, the execution time of the proposed algorithm is about 0.1 seconds). Finally, our experimental evaluations show that FLASH is easily transferable to different hardware architectures, thus enabling us to do NAS on a Raspberry Pi-3B processor in less than 3 seconds. 
    more » « less
  2. Abstract Representations of the world environment play a crucial role in artificial intelligence. It is often inefficient to conduct reasoning and inference directly in the space of raw sensory representations, such as pixel values of images. Representation learning allows us to automatically discover suitable representations from raw sensory data. For example, given raw sensory data, a deep neural network learns nonlinear representations at its hidden layers, which are subsequently used for classification (or regression) at its output layer. This happens implicitly during training through minimizing a supervised or unsupervised loss. In this letter, we study the dynamics of such implicit nonlinear representation learning. We identify a pair of a new assumption and a novel condition, called the on-model structure assumption and the data architecture alignment condition. Under the on-model structure assumption, the data architecture alignment condition is shown to be sufficient for the global convergence and necessary for global optimality. Moreover, our theory explains how and when increasing network size does and does not improve the training behaviors in the practical regime. Our results provide practical guidance for designing a model structure; for example, the on-model structure assumption can be used as a justification for using a particular model structure instead of others. As an application, we then derive a new training framework, which satisfies the data architecture alignment condition without assuming it by automatically modifying any given training algorithm dependent on data and architecture. Given a standard training algorithm, the framework running its modified version is empirically shown to maintain competitive (practical) test performances while providing global convergence guarantees for deep residual neural networks with convolutions, skip connections, and batch normalization with standard benchmark data sets, including MNIST, CIFAR-10, CIFAR-100, Semeion, KMNIST, and SVHN. 
    more » « less
  3. Normalization techniques have become a basic component in modern convolutional neural networks (ConvNets). In particular, many recent works demonstrate that promoting the orthogonality of the weights helps train deep models and improve robustness. For ConvNets, most existing methods are based on penalizing or normalizing weight matrices derived from concatenating or flattening the convolutional kernels. These methods often destroy or ignore the benign convolutional structure of the kernels; therefore, they are often expensive or impractical for deep ConvNets. In contrast, we introduce a simple and efficient Convolutional Normalization'' (ConvNorm) method that can fully exploit the convolutional structure in the Fourier domain and serve as a simple plug-and-play module to be conveniently incorporated into any ConvNets. Our method is inspired by recent work on preconditioning methods for convolutional sparse coding and can effectively promote each layer's channel-wise isometry. Furthermore, we show that our ConvNorm can reduce the layerwise spectral norm of the weight matrices and hence improve the Lipschitzness of the network, leading to easier training and improved robustness for deep ConvNets. Applied to classification under noise corruptions and generative adversarial network (GAN), we show that the ConvNorm improves the robustness of common ConvNets such as ResNet and the performance of GAN. We verify our findings via numerical experiments on CIFAR and ImageNet. Our implementation is available online at \url{}. 
    more » « less
  4. null (Ed.)
    DenseNets introduce concatenation-type skip connections that achieve state-of-the-art accuracy in several computer vision tasks. In this paper, we reveal that the topology of the concatenation-type skip connections is closely related to the gradient propagation which, in turn, enables a predictable behavior of DNNs’ test performance. To this end, we introduce a new metric called NN-Mass to quantify how effectively information flows through DNNs. Moreover, we empirically show that NN-Mass also works for other types of skip connections, e.g., for ResNets, Wide-ResNets (WRNs), and MobileNets, which contain addition-type skip connections (i.e., residuals or inverted residuals). As such, for both DenseNet-like CNNs and ResNets/WRNs/MobileNets, our theoretically grounded NN-Mass can identify models with similar accuracy, despite having significantly different size/compute requirements. Detailed experiments on both synthetic and real datasets (e.g., MNIST, CIFAR-10, CIFAR-100, ImageNet) provide extensive evidence for our insights. Finally, the closed-form equation of our NN-Mass enables us to design significantly compressed DenseNets (for CIFAR-10) and MobileNets (for ImageNet) directly at initialization without time-consuming training and/or searching. 
    more » « less
  5. Models recently used in the literature proving residual networks (ResNets) are better than linear predictors are actually different from standard ResNets that have been widely used in computer vision. In addition to the assumptions such as scalar-valued output or single residual block, the models fundamentally considered in the literature have no nonlinearities at the final residual representation that feeds into the final affine layer. To codify such a difference in nonlinearities and reveal a linear estimation property, we define ResNEsts, i.e., Residual Nonlinear Estimators, by simply dropping nonlinearities at the last residual representation from standard ResNets. We show that wide ResNEsts with bottleneck blocks can always guarantee a very desirable training property that standard ResNets aim to achieve, i.e., adding more blocks does not decrease performance given the same set of basis elements. To prove that, we first recognize ResNEsts are basis function models that are limited by a coupling problem in basis learning and linear prediction. Then, to decouple prediction weights from basis learning, we construct a special architecture termed augmented ResNEst (A-ResNEst) that always guarantees no worse performance with the addition of a block. As a result, such an A-ResNEst establishes empirical risk lower bounds for a ResNEst using corresponding bases. Our results demonstrate ResNEsts indeed have a problem of diminishing feature reuse; however, it can be avoided by sufficiently expanding or widening the input space, leading to the above-mentioned desirable property. Inspired by the densely connected networks (DenseNets) that have been shown to outperform ResNets, we also propose a corresponding new model called Densely connected Nonlinear Estimator (DenseNEst). We show that any DenseNEst can be represented as a wide ResNEst with bottleneck blocks. Unlike ResNEsts, DenseNEsts exhibit the desirable property without any special = architectural re-design. 
    more » « less