Training Data Distribution Search with Ensemble Active Learning

Anonymous

Sep 25, 2019 ICLR 2020 Conference Blind Submission readers: everyone Show Bibtex
  • Abstract: Deep Neural Networks (DNNs) often rely on very large datasets for training. Given the large size of such datasets, it is conceivable that they contain certain samples that either do not contribute or negatively impact the DNN's optimization. Modifying the training distribution in a way that excludes such samples could provide an effective solution to both improve performance and reduce training time. In this paper, we propose to scale up ensemble Active Learning methods to perform acquisition at a large scale (10k to 500k samples at a time). We do this with ensembles of hundreds of models, obtained at a minimal computational cost by reusing intermediate training checkpoints. This allows us to automatically and efficiently perform a training data distribution search for large labeled datasets. We observe that our approach obtains favorable subsets of training data, which can be used to train more accurate DNNs than training with the entire dataset. We perform an extensive experimental study of this phenomenon on three image classification benchmarks (CIFAR-10, CIFAR-100 and ImageNet), analyzing the impact of initialization schemes, acquisition functions and ensemble configurations. We demonstrate that data subsets identified with a lightweight ResNet-18 ensemble remain effective when used to train deep models like ResNet-101 and DenseNet-121. Our results provide strong empirical evidence that optimizing the training data distribution can provide significant benefits on large scale vision tasks.
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