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Implicit Bias of (Stochastic) Gradient Descent for Rank-1 Linear Neural Network

Bochen Lyu · Zhanxing Zhu

Great Hall & Hall B1+B2 (level 1) #816


Studying the implicit bias of gradient descent (GD) and stochastic gradient descent (SGD) is critical to unveil the underlying mechanism of deep learning. Unfortunately, even for standard linear networks in regression setting, a comprehensive characterization of the implicit bias is still an open problem. This paper proposes to investigate a new proxy model of standard linear network, rank-1 linear network, where each weight matrix is parameterized as a rank-1 form. For over-parameterized regression problem, we precisely analyze the implicit bias of GD and SGD---by identifying a “potential” function such that GD converges to its minimizer constrained by zero training error (i.e., interpolation solution), and further characterizing the role of the noise introduced by SGD in perturbing the form of this potential. Our results explicitly connect the depth of the network and the initialization with the implicit bias of GD and SGD. Furthermore, we emphasize a new implicit bias of SGD jointly induced by stochasticity and over-parameterization, which can reduce the dependence of the SGD's solution on the initialization. Our findings regarding the implicit bias are different from that of a recently popular model, the diagonal linear network. We highlight that the induced bias of our rank-1 model is more consistent with standard linear network while the diagonal one is not. This suggests that the proposed rank-1 linear network might be a plausible proxy for standard linear net.

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