E (0,00), remains in spite of many real (and 459 460 Finnoff imagined)deficiencies the most widely used network training algorithm, and a vast body of literature documents its general applicability and robustness. In this paper we will draw on the highly developed literature of stochastic approximation theory todemonstrate several asymptotic properties of simple backpropagation.
Spiking neural networks (SNNs) are positioned to enable spatio-temporal information processing and ultra-low power event-driven neuromorphic hardware. However, SNNs are yet to reach the same performances of conventional deep artificial neural networks (ANNs), a long-standing challenge due to complex dynamics and non-differentiable spike events encountered in training. The existing SNN error backpropagation (BP) methods are limited in terms of scalability, lack of proper handling of spiking discontinuities, and/or mismatch between the rate-coded loss function and computed gradient. We present a hybrid macro/micro level backpropagation (HM2-BP) algorithm for training multi-layer SNNs. The temporal effects are precisely captured by the proposed spike-train level post-synaptic potential (S-PSP) at the microscopic level. The rate-coded errors are defined at the macroscopic level, computed and back-propagated across both macroscopic and microscopic levels. Different from existing BP methods, HM2-BP directly computes the gradient of the rate-coded loss function w.r.t tunable parameters. We evaluate the proposed HM2-BP algorithm by training deep fully connected and convolutional SNNs based on the static MNIST  and dynamic neuromorphic N-MNIST . HM2-BP achieves an accuracy level of 99.49% and 98.88% for MNIST and N-MNIST, respectively, outperforming the best reported performances obtained from the existing SNN BP algorithms. Furthermore, the HM2-BP produces the highest accuracies based on SNNs for the EMNIST  dataset, and leads to high recognition accuracy for the 16-speaker spoken English letters of TI46 Corpus , a challenging patio-temporal speech recognition benchmark for which no prior success based on SNNs was reported. It also achieves competitive performances surpassing those of conventional deep learning models when dealing with asynchronous spiking streams.
Neural network learning is typically slow since backpropagation needs to compute full gradients and backpropagate them across multiple layers. Despite its success of existing work in accelerating propagation through sparseness, the relevant theoretical characteristics remain unexplored and we empirically find that they suffer from the loss of information contained in unpropagated gradients. To tackle these problems, in this work, we present a unified sparse backpropagation framework and provide a detailed analysis of its theoretical characteristics. Analysis reveals that when applied to a multilayer perceptron, our framework essentially performs gradient descent using an estimated gradient similar enough to the true gradient, resulting in convergence in probability under certain conditions. Furthermore, a simple yet effective algorithm named memorized sparse backpropagation (MSBP) is proposed to remedy the problem of information loss by storing unpropagated gradients in memory for the next learning. The experiments demonstrate that the proposed MSBP is able to effectively alleviate the information loss in traditional sparse backpropagation while achieving comparable acceleration.
New information destroys old unless the old information is continually relearned by the net. McCloskey & Cohen  and Ratcliff  have demonstrated that this is a serious problem with connectionist networks. A related problem is that connectionist networks are not sensitive to overtraining. A network trained 1000 times to associate a pattern A with a pattern A' will forget that fact just as quickly as would a network trained on that association for 100 cycles. Clearly, this behavior is unacceptable as a model of mind, as well as from a purely practical standpoint.