Recently, researchers in the artificial neural network field have focused their attention on connectionist models composed by several hidden layers. In fact, experimental results and heuristic considerations suggest that deep architectures are more suitable than shallow ones for modern applications, facing very complex problems, e.g., vision and human language understanding. However, the actual theoretical results supporting such a claim are still few and incomplete. In this paper, we propose a new approach to study how the depth of feedforward neural networks impacts on their ability in implementing high complexity functions. First, a new measure based on topological concepts is introduced, aimed at evaluating the complexity of the function implemented by a neural network, used for classification purposes. Then, deep and shallow neural architectures with common sigmoidal activation functions are compared, by deriving upper and lower bounds on their complexity, and studying how the complexity depends on the number of hidden units and the used activation function. The obtained results seem to support the idea that deep networks actually implements functions of higher complexity, so that they are able, with the same number of resources, to address more difficult problems.

Bianchini, M., & Scarselli, F. (2014). On the complexity of neural network classifiers: a comparison between shallow and deep architectures. IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON NEURAL NETWORKS AND LEARNING SYSTEMS, 25(8), 1553-1565 [10.1109/TNNLS.2013.2293637].

On the complexity of neural network classifiers: a comparison between shallow and deep architectures

BIANCHINI, MONICA;SCARSELLI, FRANCO
2014

Abstract

Recently, researchers in the artificial neural network field have focused their attention on connectionist models composed by several hidden layers. In fact, experimental results and heuristic considerations suggest that deep architectures are more suitable than shallow ones for modern applications, facing very complex problems, e.g., vision and human language understanding. However, the actual theoretical results supporting such a claim are still few and incomplete. In this paper, we propose a new approach to study how the depth of feedforward neural networks impacts on their ability in implementing high complexity functions. First, a new measure based on topological concepts is introduced, aimed at evaluating the complexity of the function implemented by a neural network, used for classification purposes. Then, deep and shallow neural architectures with common sigmoidal activation functions are compared, by deriving upper and lower bounds on their complexity, and studying how the complexity depends on the number of hidden units and the used activation function. The obtained results seem to support the idea that deep networks actually implements functions of higher complexity, so that they are able, with the same number of resources, to address more difficult problems.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11365/47142
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