Kevin Swersky

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Research Scientist at Google Brain

  • Meta-Dataset: A Dataset of Datasets for Learning to Learn from Few Examples

    Few-shot classification refers to learning a classifier for new classes given only a few examples. While a plethora of models have emerged to tackle this recently, we find the current procedure and datasets that are used to systematically assess progress in this setting lacking. To address this, we propose Meta-Dataset: a new benchmark for training and evaluating few-shot classifiers that is large-scale, consists of multiple datasets, and presents more natural and realistic tasks. The aim is to measure the ability of state-of-the-art models to leverage diverse sources of data to achieve higher generalization, and to evaluate that generalization ability in a more challenging setting. We additionally measure robustness of current methods to variations in the number of available examples and the number of classes. Finally our extensive empirical evaluation leads us to identify weaknesses in Prototypical Networks and MAML, two popular few-shot classification methods, and to propose a new method, Proto-MAML, which achieves improved performance on our benchmark.

    03/07/2019 ∙ by Eleni Triantafillou, et al. ∙ 42 share

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  • Learning Sparse Networks Using Targeted Dropout

    Neural networks are easier to optimise when they have many more weights than are required for modelling the mapping from inputs to outputs. This suggests a two-stage learning procedure that first learns a large net and then prunes away connections or hidden units. But standard training does not necessarily encourage nets to be amenable to pruning. We introduce targeted dropout, a method for training a neural network so that it is robust to subsequent pruning. Before computing the gradients for each weight update, targeted dropout stochastically selects a set of units or weights to be dropped using a simple self-reinforcing sparsity criterion and then computes the gradients for the remaining weights. The resulting network is robust to post hoc pruning of weights or units that frequently occur in the dropped sets. The method improves upon more complicated sparsifying regularisers while being simple to implement and easy to tune.

    05/31/2019 ∙ by Aidan N. Gomez, et al. ∙ 26 share

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  • Graph Normalizing Flows

    We introduce graph normalizing flows: a new, reversible graph neural network model for prediction and generation. On supervised tasks, graph normalizing flows perform similarly to message passing neural networks, but at a significantly reduced memory footprint, allowing them to scale to larger graphs. In the unsupervised case, we combine graph normalizing flows with a novel graph auto-encoder to create a generative model of graph structures. Our model is permutation-invariant, generating entire graphs with a single feed-forward pass, and achieves competitive results with the state-of-the art auto-regressive models, while being better suited to parallel computing architectures.

    05/30/2019 ∙ by Jenny Liu, et al. ∙ 9 share

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  • Flexibly Fair Representation Learning by Disentanglement

    We consider the problem of learning representations that achieve group and subgroup fairness with respect to multiple sensitive attributes. Taking inspiration from the disentangled representation learning literature, we propose an algorithm for learning compact representations of datasets that are useful for reconstruction and prediction, but are also flexibly fair, meaning they can be easily modified at test time to achieve subgroup demographic parity with respect to multiple sensitive attributes and their conjunctions. We show empirically that the resulting encoder---which does not require the sensitive attributes for inference---enables the adaptation of a single representation to a variety of fair classification tasks with new target labels and subgroup definitions.

    06/06/2019 ∙ by Elliot Creager, et al. ∙ 4 share

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  • Neural Networks for Modeling Source Code Edits

    Programming languages are emerging as a challenging and interesting domain for machine learning. A core task, which has received significant attention in recent years, is building generative models of source code. However, to our knowledge, previous generative models have always been framed in terms of generating static snapshots of code. In this work, we instead treat source code as a dynamic object and tackle the problem of modeling the edits that software developers make to source code files. This requires extracting intent from previous edits and leveraging it to generate subsequent edits. We develop several neural networks and use synthetic data to test their ability to learn challenging edit patterns that require strong generalization. We then collect and train our models on a large-scale dataset of Google source code, consisting of millions of fine-grained edits from thousands of Python developers. From the modeling perspective, our main conclusion is that a new composition of attentional and pointer network components provides the best overall performance and scalability. From the application perspective, our results provide preliminary evidence of the feasibility of developing tools that learn to predict future edits.

    04/04/2019 ∙ by Rui Zhao, et al. ∙ 2 share

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  • Learning Execution through Neural Code Fusion

    As the performance of computer systems stagnates due to the end of Moore's Law, there is a need for new models that can understand and optimize the execution of general purpose code. While there is a growing body of work on using Graph Neural Networks (GNNs) to learn representations of source code, these representations do not understand how code dynamically executes. In this work, we propose a new approach to use GNNs to learn fused representations of general source code and its execution. Our approach defines a multi-task GNN over low-level representations of source code and program state (i.e., assembly code and dynamic memory states), converting complex source code constructs and complex data structures into a simpler, more uniform format. We show that this leads to improved performance over similar methods that do not use execution and it opens the door to applying GNN models to new tasks that would not be feasible from static code alone. As an illustration of this, we apply the new model to challenging dynamic tasks (branch prediction and prefetching) from the SPEC CPU benchmark suite, outperforming the state-of-the-art by 26 respectively. Moreover, we use the learned fused graph embeddings to demonstrate transfer learning with high performance on an indirectly related task (algorithm classification).

    06/17/2019 ∙ by Zhan Shi, et al. ∙ 1 share

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  • Learning Hard Alignments with Variational Inference

    There has recently been significant interest in hard attention models for tasks such as object recognition, visual captioning and speech recognition. Hard attention can offer benefits over soft attention such as decreased computational cost, but training hard attention models can be difficult because of the discrete latent variables they introduce. Previous work used REINFORCE and Q-learning to approach these issues, but those methods can provide high-variance gradient estimates and be slow to train. In this paper, we tackle the problem of learning hard attention for a sequential task using variational inference methods, specifically the recently introduced VIMCO and NVIL. Furthermore, we propose a novel baseline that adapts VIMCO to this setting. We demonstrate our method on a phoneme recognition task in clean and noisy environments and show that our method outperforms REINFORCE, with the difference being greater for a more complicated task.

    05/16/2017 ∙ by Dieterich Lawson, et al. ∙ 0 share

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  • Prototypical Networks for Few-shot Learning

    We propose prototypical networks for the problem of few-shot classification, where a classifier must generalize to new classes not seen in the training set, given only a small number of examples of each new class. Prototypical networks learn a metric space in which classification can be performed by computing distances to prototype representations of each class. Compared to recent approaches for few-shot learning, they reflect a simpler inductive bias that is beneficial in this limited-data regime, and achieve excellent results. We provide an analysis showing that some simple design decisions can yield substantial improvements over recent approaches involving complicated architectural choices and meta-learning. We further extend prototypical networks to zero-shot learning and achieve state-of-the-art results on the CU-Birds dataset.

    03/15/2017 ∙ by Jake Snell, et al. ∙ 0 share

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  • The Variational Fair Autoencoder

    We investigate the problem of learning representations that are invariant to certain nuisance or sensitive factors of variation in the data while retaining as much of the remaining information as possible. Our model is based on a variational autoencoding architecture with priors that encourage independence between sensitive and latent factors of variation. Any subsequent processing, such as classification, can then be performed on this purged latent representation. To remove any remaining dependencies we incorporate an additional penalty term based on the "Maximum Mean Discrepancy" (MMD) measure. We discuss how these architectures can be efficiently trained on data and show in experiments that this method is more effective than previous work in removing unwanted sources of variation while maintaining informative latent representations.

    11/03/2015 ∙ by Christos Louizos, et al. ∙ 0 share

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  • Scalable Bayesian Optimization Using Deep Neural Networks

    Bayesian optimization is an effective methodology for the global optimization of functions with expensive evaluations. It relies on querying a distribution over functions defined by a relatively cheap surrogate model. An accurate model for this distribution over functions is critical to the effectiveness of the approach, and is typically fit using Gaussian processes (GPs). However, since GPs scale cubically with the number of observations, it has been challenging to handle objectives whose optimization requires many evaluations, and as such, massively parallelizing the optimization. In this work, we explore the use of neural networks as an alternative to GPs to model distributions over functions. We show that performing adaptive basis function regression with a neural network as the parametric form performs competitively with state-of-the-art GP-based approaches, but scales linearly with the number of data rather than cubically. This allows us to achieve a previously intractable degree of parallelism, which we apply to large scale hyperparameter optimization, rapidly finding competitive models on benchmark object recognition tasks using convolutional networks, and image caption generation using neural language models.

    02/19/2015 ∙ by Jasper Snoek, et al. ∙ 0 share

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  • Generative Moment Matching Networks

    We consider the problem of learning deep generative models from data. We formulate a method that generates an independent sample via a single feedforward pass through a multilayer perceptron, as in the recently proposed generative adversarial networks (Goodfellow et al., 2014). Training a generative adversarial network, however, requires careful optimization of a difficult minimax program. Instead, we utilize a technique from statistical hypothesis testing known as maximum mean discrepancy (MMD), which leads to a simple objective that can be interpreted as matching all orders of statistics between a dataset and samples from the model, and can be trained by backpropagation. We further boost the performance of this approach by combining our generative network with an auto-encoder network, using MMD to learn to generate codes that can then be decoded to produce samples. We show that the combination of these techniques yields excellent generative models compared to baseline approaches as measured on MNIST and the Toronto Face Database.

    02/10/2015 ∙ by Yujia Li, et al. ∙ 0 share

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