Bayesnas: A Bayesian approach for neural architecture search

Hongpeng Zhou, Minghao Yang, Jun Wang, Wei Pan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review


One-Shot Neural Architecture Search (NAS) is a promising method to significantly reduce search time without any separate training. It can be treated as a Network Compression problem on the architecture parameters from an overparameterized network. However, there are two issues associated with most one-shot NAS methods. First, dependencies between a node and its predecessors and successors are often disregarded which result in improper treatment over zero operations. Second, architecture parameters pruning based on their magnitude is questionable. In this paper, we employ the classic Bayesian learning approach to alleviate these two issues by modeling architecture parameters using hierarchical automatic relevance determination (HARD) priors. Unlike other NAS methods, we train the overparameterized network for only one epoch then update the architecture. Impressively, this enabled us to find the architecture on CIFAR-10 within only 0.2 GPU days using a single GPU. Competitive performance can be also achieved by transferring to ImageNet. As a byproduct, our approach can be applied directly to compress convolutional neural networks by enforcing structural sparsity which achieves extremely sparse networks without accuracy deterioration.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 36th International Conference on Machine Learning, ICML 2019
PublisherInternational Machine Learning Society (IMLS)
ISBN (Electronic)978-151088698-8
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Event36th International Conference on Machine Learning, ICML 2019 - Long Beach, United States
Duration: 9 Jun 201915 Jun 2019


Conference36th International Conference on Machine Learning, ICML 2019
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityLong Beach

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