Finding the Task-Optimal Low-Bit Sub-Distribution in Deep Neural Networks

DGMS Overview


Quantized neural networks typically require smaller memory footprints and lower computation complexity, which is crucial for efficient deployment. However, quantization inevitably leads to a distribution divergence from the original network, which generally degrades the performance. To tackle this issue, massive efforts have been made, but most existing approaches lack statistical considerations and depend on several manual configurations. In this paper, we present an adaptive-mapping quantization method to learn an optimal latent sub-distribution that is inherent within models and smoothly approximated with a concrete Gaussian Mixture (GM). In particular, the network weights are projected in compliance with the GM-approximated sub-distribution. This sub-distribution evolves along with the weight update in a co-tuning schema guided by the direct task-objective optimization. Sufficient experiments on image classification and object detection over various modern architectures demonstrate the effectiveness, generalization property, and transferability of the proposed method. Besides, an efficient deployment flow for the mobile CPU is developed, achieving up to 7.46$\times$ inference acceleration on an octa-core ARM CPU. Codes have been publicly released on Github.

In Proceedings of The 39th International Conference on Machine Learning (ICML), 2022.