FactorizeNet: Progressive Depth Factorization for Efficient Network Architecture Exploration Under Quantization Constraints

Stone Yun, Alexander Wong

Depth factorization and quantization have emerged as two of the principal strategies for designing efficient deep convolutional neural network (CNN) architectures tailored for low-power inference on the edge. However, there is still little detailed understanding of how different depth factorization choices affect the final, trained distributions of each layer in a CNN, particularly in the situation of quantized weights and activations. In this study, we introduce a progressive depth factorization strategy for efficient CNN architecture exploration under quantization constraints. By algorithmically increasing the granularity of depth factorization in a progressive manner, the proposed strategy enables a fine-grained, low-level analysis of layer-wise distributions. Thus enabling the gain of in-depth, layer-level insights on efficiency-accuracy tradeoffs under fixed-precision quantization. Such a progressive depth factorization strategy also enables efficient identification of the optimal depth-factorized macroarchitecture design (which we will refer to here as FactorizeNet) based on the desired efficiency-accuracy requirements.

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