Adapting Stepsizes by Momentumized Gradients Improves Optimization and GeneralizationDownload PDF


Sep 29, 2021 (edited Oct 05, 2021)ICLR 2022 Conference Blind SubmissionReaders: Everyone
  • Keywords: Deep Learning Optimizer, Neural Network Optimization, Neural Network Generalization
  • Abstract: Adaptive gradient methods, such as Adam, have achieved tremendous success in machine learning. Scaling gradients by square roots of the running averages of squared past gradients, such methods are able to attain rapid training of modern deep neural networks. Nevertheless, they are observed to generalize worse than stochastic gradient descent (SGD) and tend to be trapped in local minima at an early stage during training. Intriguingly, we discover that substituting the gradient in the second moment estimation term with the momentumized version in Adam can well solve the issues. The intuition is that gradient with momentum contains more accurate directional information and therefore its second moment estimation is a better choice for scaling than that of the raw gradient. Thereby we propose AdaMomentum as a new optimizer reaching the goal of training fast while generalizing better. We further develop a theory to back up the improvement in optimization and generalization and provide convergence guarantees under both convex and nonconvex settings. Extensive experiments on a wide range of tasks and models demonstrate that AdaMomentum exhibits state-of-the-art performance consistently. The source code is available at
  • One-sentence Summary: We propose AdaMomentum as a new optimizer for machine learning, which is as fast as adaptive gradient methods while generalizing much better.
  • Supplementary Material: zip
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