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DropPruning for Model Compression

arXiv.org Machine Learning

Deep neural networks (DNNs) have dramatically achieved great success on a variety of challenging tasks. However, most of the successful DNNs are structurally so complex, leading to much storage requirement and floating-point operation. This paper proposes a novel technique, named Drop Pruning, to compress the DNNs by pruning the weights from a dense high-accuracy baseline model without accuracy loss. Drop Pruning also falls into the standard iterative prune-retrain procedure, where a \emph{drop} strategy exists at each pruning step: \emph{drop out}, stochastic deleting some unimportant weights and \emph{drop in}, stochastic recovering some pruned weights. \emph{Drop out} and \emph{drop in} are supposed to handle the two drawbacks of the traditional pruning methods: local importance judgment and irretrievable pruning process, respectively. The suitable choosing of \emph{drop} probabilities can decrease the model size during pruning process and lead it to flow to the target sparsity. Drop Pruning also has some similar spirits with dropout, a stochastic algorithm in Integer Optimization and the Dense-Sparse-Dense training technique. Drop Pruning can significantly reducing overfitting while compressing the model. Experimental results demonstrates that Drop Pruning can achieve the state-of-the-art performance on many benchmark pruning tasks, about ${11.1\times}$ compression of VGG-16 on CIFAR10 and ${14.3\times}$ compression of LeNet-5 on MNIST without accuracy loss, which may provide some new insights into the aspect of model compression.


Campfire: Compressible, Regularization-Free, Structured Sparse Training for Hardware Accelerators

arXiv.org Machine Learning

This paper studies structured sparse training of CNNs with a gradual pruning technique that leads to fixed, sparse weight matrices after a set number of epochs. We simplify the structure of the enforced sparsity so that it reduces overhead caused by regularization. The proposed training methodology Campfire explores pruning at granularities within a convolutional kernel and filter. We study various tradeoffs with respect to pruning duration, level of sparsity, and learning rate configuration. We show that our method creates a sparse version of ResNet-50 and ResNet-50 v1.5 on full ImageNet while remaining within a negligible <1% margin of accuracy loss. To ensure that this type of sparse training does not harm the robustness of the network, we also demonstrate how the network behaves in the presence of adversarial attacks. Our results show that with 70% target sparsity, over 75% top-1 accuracy is achievable.


Rethinking the Value of Network Pruning

arXiv.org Machine Learning

Network pruning is widely used for reducing the heavy computational cost of deep models. A typical pruning algorithm is a three-stage pipeline, i.e., training (a large model), pruning and fine-tuning. During pruning, according to a certain criterion, redundant weights are pruned and important weights are kept to best preserve the accuracy. In this work, we make several surprising observations which contradict common beliefs. For all the six state-of-the-art pruning algorithms we examined, fine-tuning a pruned model only gives comparable or even worse performance than training that model with randomly initialized weights. For pruning algorithms which assume a predefined target network architecture, one can get rid of the full pipeline and directly train the target network from scratch. Our observations are consistent for a wide variety of pruning algorithms with multiple network architectures, datasets, and tasks. Our results have several implications: 1) training a large, over-parameterized model is not necessary to obtain an efficient final model, 2) learned "important" weights of the large model are not necessarily useful for the small pruned model, 3) the pruned architecture itself, rather than a set of inherited "important" weights, is what leads to the efficiency benefit in the final model, which suggests that some pruning algorithms could be seen as performing network architecture search. Over-parameterization is a widely-recognized property of deep neural networks (Denton et al., 2014; Ba & Caruana, 2014), which leads to high computational cost and high memory footprint.


(Pen-) Ultimate DNN Pruning

arXiv.org Machine Learning

DNN pruning reduces memory footprint and computational work of DNN-based solutions to improve performance and energy-efficiency. An effective pruning scheme should be able to systematically remove connections and/or neurons that are unnecessary or redundant, reducing the DNN size without any loss in accuracy. In this paper we show that prior pruning schemes require an extremely time-consuming iterative process that requires retraining the DNN many times to tune the pruning hyperparameters. We propose a DNN pruning scheme based on Principal Component Analysis and relative importance of each neuron's connection that automatically finds the optimized DNN in one shot without requiring hand-tuning of multiple parameters.


On Iterative Neural Network Pruning, Reinitialization, and the Similarity of Masks

arXiv.org Machine Learning

A BSTRACT We examine how recently documented, fundamental phenomena in deep learning models subject to pruning are affected by changes in the pruning procedure. Specifically, we analyze differences in the connectivity structure and learning dynamics of pruned models found through a set of common iterative pruning techniques, to address questions of uniqueness of trainable, high-sparsity sub-networks, and their dependence on the chosen pruning method. In convolutional layers, we document the emergence of structure induced by magnitude-based unstructured pruning in conjunction with weight rewinding that resembles the effects of structured pruning. We also show empirical evidence that weight stability can be automatically achieved through apposite pruning techniques. 1 I NTRODUCTION Deep neural architectures have seen a dramatic increase in size over the years (Amodei & Hernandez, 2018). While advantageous under this point of view, the proliferation of parameters in neural architectures may induce adverse consequences. The computational cost to train some state-of-the-art models has raised the barrier to entry for many researchers hoping to contribute. Because of limited memory, time, and compute, and to enable private, secure, on-device computation, methods for model compression have seen a rise in popularity. Among these are techniques for model pruning, quantization, and distillation. Pruning, in particular, has been seen as an overfitting avoidance method since the early decision tree literature (Breiman et al., 1984), with work such as that of Mingers (1989) comparing the effects of different tree pruning techniques.