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AZ-NAS: Assembling Zero-Cost Proxies for Network Architecture Search

Junghyup Lee · Bumsub Ham

Arch 4A-E Poster #105
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Wed 19 Jun 5 p.m. PDT — 6:30 p.m. PDT


Training-free network architecture search (NAS) aims to discover high-performing networks with zero-cost proxies, capturing network characteristics related to the final performance. However, network rankings estimated by previous training-free NAS methods have shown weak correlations with the performance. To address this issue, we propose AZ-NAS, a novel approach that leverages the ensemble of various zero-cost proxies to enhance the correlation between a predicted ranking of networks and the ground truth substantially in terms of the performance. To achieve this, we introduce four novel zero-cost proxies that are complementary to each other, analyzing distinct traits of architectures in the views of expressivity, progressivity, trainability, and complexity. The proxy scores can be obtained simultaneously within a single forward and backward pass, making an overall NAS process highly efficient. In order to integrate the rankings predicted by our proxies effectively, we introduce a non-linear ranking aggregation method that highlights the networks highly-ranked consistently across all the proxies. Experimental results conclusively demonstrate the efficacy and efficiency of AZ-NAS, outperforming state-of-the-art methods on standard benchmarks, all while maintaining a reasonable runtime cost.

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