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Pre-Train Your Loss: Easy Bayesian Transfer Learning with Informative Priors
Ravid Shwartz-Ziv · Micah Goldblum · Hossein Souri · Sanyam Kapoor · Chen Zhu · Yann LeCun · Andrew Wilson

Thu Dec 01 09:00 AM -- 11:00 AM (PST) @ Hall J #428

Deep learning is increasingly moving towards a transfer learning paradigm whereby large foundation models are fine-tuned on downstream tasks, starting from an initialization learned on the source task. But an initialization contains relatively little information about the source task, and does not reflect the belief that our knowledge of the source task should affect the locations and shape of optima on the downstream task.Instead, we show that we can learn highly informative posteriors from the source task, through supervised or self-supervised approaches, which then serve as the basis for priors that modify the whole loss surface on the downstream task. This simple modular approach enables significant performance gains and more data-efficient learning on a variety of downstream classification and segmentation tasks, serving as a drop-in replacement for standard pre-training strategies. These highly informative priors also can be saved for future use, similar to pre-trained weights, and stand in contrast to the zero-mean isotropic uninformative priors that are typically used in Bayesian deep learning.

Author Information

Ravid Shwartz-Ziv (Hebrew University of Jerusalem)
Micah Goldblum (University of Maryland)
Hossein Souri (Johns Hopkins University)
Sanyam Kapoor (New York University)
Chen Zhu (Google Brain)
Yann LeCun (Facebook)

Yann LeCun is Director of AI Research at Facebook, and Silver Professor of Data Science, Computer Science, Neural Science, and Electrical Engineering at New York University. He received the Electrical Engineer Diploma from ESIEE, Paris in 1983, and a PhD in Computer Science from Université Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris) in 1987. After a postdoc at the University of Toronto, he joined AT&T Bell Laboratories in Holmdel, NJ in 1988. He became head of the Image Processing Research Department at AT&T Labs-Research in 1996, and joined NYU as a professor in 2003, after a brief period as a Fellow of the NEC Research Institute in Princeton. From 2012 to 2014 he directed NYU's initiative in data science and became the founding director of the NYU Center for Data Science. He was named Director of AI Research at Facebook in late 2013 and retains a part-time position on the NYU faculty. His current interests include AI, machine learning, computer perception, mobile robotics, and computational neuroscience. He has published over 180 technical papers and book chapters on these topics as well as on neural networks, handwriting recognition, image processing and compression, and on dedicated circuits for computer perception.

Andrew Wilson (New York University)
Andrew Wilson

I am a professor of machine learning at New York University.

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