Adaptive Computation with Elastic Input Sequence

ICLR 2023(2023)

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When solving a problem, human beings have the adaptive ability in terms of the type of information they use, the procedure they take, and the amount of time they spend approaching and solving the problem. However, most standard neural networks have the same function type and fixed computation budget on different samples regardless of their nature and difficulty. Adaptivity is a powerful paradigm as it not only imbues practitioners with flexibility pertaining to the downstream usage of these models but can also serve as a powerful inductive bias for solving certain challenging classes of problems. In this work, we propose a new strategy, AdaTape, that enables dynamic computation in neural networks via adaptive tape tokens. AdaTape employs an elastic input sequence by equipping an existing architecture with a dynamic read-and-write tape. Specifically, we adaptively generate input sequences using tape tokens obtained from a tape bank that can either be trainable or generated from input data. We analyze the challenges and requirements to obtain dynamic sequence content and length, and propose the Adaptive Tape Reader (ATR) algorithm to achieve both objectives. Via extensive experiments on image recognition tasks, we show that AdaTape can achieve better performance while maintaining the computational cost.
Adaptive computation,dynamic allocation of computation budget.
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