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How to Center Binary Deep Boltzmann Machines

  • Melchior, Jan
  • Fischer, Asja
  • Wiskott, Laurenz
Publication Date
Jul 16, 2015
Submission Date
Nov 06, 2013
arXiv ID: 1311.1354
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This work analyzes centered binary Restricted Boltzmann Machines (RBMs) and binary Deep Boltzmann Machines (DBMs), where centering is done by subtracting offset values from visible and hidden variables. We show analytically that (i) centering results in a different but equivalent parameterization for artificial neural networks in general, (ii) the expected performance of centered binary RBMs/DBMs is invariant under simultaneous flip of data and offsets, for any offset value in the range of zero to one, (iii) centering can be reformulated as a different update rule for normal binary RBMs/DBMs, and (iv) using the enhanced gradient is equivalent to setting the offset values to the average over model and data mean. Furthermore, numerical simulations suggest that (i) optimal generative performance is achieved by subtracting mean values from visible as well as hidden variables, (ii) centered RBMs/DBMs reach significantly higher log-likelihood values than normal binary RBMs/DBMs, (iii) centering variants whose offsets depend on the model mean, like the enhanced gradient, suffer from severe divergence problems, (iv) learning is stabilized if an exponentially moving average over the batch means is used for the offset values instead of the current batch mean, which also prevents the enhanced gradient from diverging, (v) centered RBMs/DBMs reach higher LL values than normal RBMs/DBMs while having a smaller norm of the weight matrix, (vi) centering leads to an update direction that is closer to the natural gradient and that the natural gradient is extremly efficient for training RBMs, (vii) centering dispense the need for greedy layer-wise pre-training of DBMs, (viii) furthermore we show that pre-training often even worsen the results independently whether centering is used or not, and (ix) centering is also beneficial for auto encoders.

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