Reducing Parameter Space for Neural Network Training

22 May 2018  ·  Tong Qin, Ling Zhou, Dongbin Xiu ·

For neural networks (NNs) with rectified linear unit (ReLU) or binary activation functions, we show that their training can be accomplished in a reduced parameter space. Specifically, the weights in each neuron can be trained on the unit sphere, as opposed to the entire space, and the threshold can be trained in a bounded interval, as opposed to the real line. We show that the NNs in the reduced parameter space are mathematically equivalent to the standard NNs with parameters in the whole space. The reduced parameter space shall facilitate the optimization procedure for the network training, as the search space becomes (much) smaller. We demonstrate the improved training performance using numerical examples.

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