Stride (Machine Learning)

What is Stride (Machine Learning)?

Stride is a component of convolutional neural networks, or neural networks tuned for the compression of images and video data. Stride is a parameter of the neural network's filter that modifies the amount of movement over the image or video. For example, if a neural network's stride is set to 1, the filter will move one pixel, or unit,  at a time. The size of the filter affects the encoded output volume, so stride is often set to a whole integer, rather than a fraction or decimal.

How does Stride work?

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Imagine a convolutional neural network is taking an image and analyzing the content. If the filter size is 3x3 pixels, the contained nine pixels will be converted down to 1 pixel in the output layer. Naturally, as the stride, or movement, is increased, the resulting output will be smaller. Stride is a parameter that works in conjunction with padding, the feature that adds blank, or empty pixels to the frame of the image to allow for a minimized reduction of size in the output layer. Roughly, it is a way of increasing the size of an image, to counteract the fact that stride reduces the size. Padding and stride are the foundational parameters of any convolutional neural network. 

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