Exploring Hidden Dimensions in Accelerating Convolutional Neural Networks

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Zhihao Jia, Sina Lin, Charles R. Qi, Alex Aiken ;
Proceedings of the 35th International Conference on Machine Learning, PMLR 80:2274-2283, 2018.

Abstract

The past few years have witnessed growth in the computational requirements for training deep convolutional neural networks. Current approaches parallelize training onto multiple devices by applying a single parallelization strategy (e.g., data or model parallelism) to all layers in a network. Although easy to reason about, these approaches result in suboptimal runtime performance in large-scale distributed training, since different layers in a network may prefer different parallelization strategies. In this paper, we propose layer-wise parallelism that allows each layer in a network to use an individual parallelization strategy. We jointly optimize how each layer is parallelized by solving a graph search problem. Our evaluation shows that layer-wise parallelism outperforms state-of-the-art approaches by increasing training throughput, reducing communication costs, achieving better scalability to multiple GPUs, while maintaining original network accuracy.

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