Authors: Artur Jordao, Ricardo Kloss, Fernando Akio, William Robson Schwartz, Smart Sense Laboratory, Computer Science Department Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Brazil

Abstract: Modern pattern recognition methods are based on convolutional networks since they are able to learn complex patterns that benefit the classification. However, convolutional networks are computationally expensive and require a considerable amount of memory, which limits their deployment on low-power and resource-constrained systems. To handle these problems, recent approaches have proposed pruning strategies that find and remove unimportant neurons (i.e., filters) in these networks. Despite achieving remarkable results, existing pruning approaches are ineffective since the accuracy of the original network is degraded. In this work, we propose a novel approach to efficiently remove filters from convolutional networks. Our approach estimates the filter importance based on its relationship with the class label on a low-dimensional space. This relationship is computed using Partial Least Squares (PLS) and Variable Importance in Projection (VIP). Our method is able to reduce up to 67% of the floating point operations (FLOPs) without penalizing the network accuracy. With a negligible drop in accuracy, we can reduce up to 90% of FLOPs. Additionally, sometimes the method is even able to improve the accuracy compared to original, unpruned, network. We show that employing PLS+VIP as the criterion for detecting the filters to be removed is better than recent feature selection techniques, which have been employed by state-of-the-art pruning methods. Finally, we show that the proposed method achieves the highest FLOPs reduction and the smallest drop in accuracy when compared to state-of-the-art pruning approaches.

Comments: Presented at BMVC 2019: Workshop on Embedded AI for Real-time Machine Vision, Cardiff, UK.
Cite as: Paper (PDF): EMAI2019_3.pdf