Hardware-adaptive Efficient Latency Prediction for NAS via Meta-Learning

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 34 pre-proceedings (NeurIPS 2021)

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Authors

Hayeon Lee, Sewoong Lee, Song Chong, Sung Ju Hwang

Abstract

For deployment, neural architecture search should be hardware-aware, in order to satisfy the device-specific constraints (e.g., memory usage, latency and energy consumption) and enhance the model efficiency. Existing methods on hardware-aware NAS collect a large number of samples (e.g., accuracy and latency) from a target device, either builds a lookup table or a latency estimator. However, such approach is impractical in real-world scenarios as there exist numerous devices with different hardware specifications, and collecting samples from such a large number of devices will require prohibitive computational and monetary cost. To overcome such limitations, we propose Hardware-adaptive Efficient Latency Predictor (HELP), which formulates the device-specific latency estimation problem as a meta-learning problem, such that we can estimate the latency of a model's performance for a given task on an unseen device with a few samples. To this end, we introduce novel hardware embeddings to embed any devices considering them as black-box functions that output latencies, and meta-learn the hardware-adaptive latency predictor in a device-dependent manner, using the hardware embeddings. We validate the proposed HELP for its latency estimation performance on unseen platforms, on which it achieves high estimation performance with as few as 10 measurement samples, outperforming all relevant baselines. We also validate end-to-end NAS frameworks using HELP against ones without it, and show that it largely reduces the total time cost of the base NAS method, in latency-constrained settings.