Upcoming ICSE'22 paper describes a technique to decompose CNNs into Modules

In this paper, we propose an approach to decompose a convolutional neural network (CNN) model used for image classification into modules, in which each module can classify a single output class. Furthermore, these modules can be reused or replaced in different scenarios. Also, we evaluate our approach against the 𝐢𝑂2𝑒 consumption of models created from scratch and reusing or replacing decomposed modules.

The paper’s abstract:

``Training from scratch is the most common way to build a Convolutional Neural Network (CNN) based model. What if we can build new CNN models by reusing parts from previously build CNN models? What if we can improve a CNN model by replacing (possibly faulty) parts with other parts? In both cases, instead of training, can we identify the part responsible for each output class (module) in the model(s) and reuse or replace only the desired output classes to build a model? Prior work has proposed decomposing dense-based networks into modules (one for each output class) to enable reusability and replaceability in various scenarios. However, this work is limited to the dense layers and based on the one-to-one relationship between the nodes in consecutive layers. Due to the shared architecture in the CNN model, prior work cannot be adapted directly. In this paper, we propose to decompose a CNN model used for image classification problems into modules for each output class. These modules can further be reused or replaced to build a new model. We have evaluated our approach with CIFAR-10, CIFAR-100, and ImageNet tiny datasets with three variations of ResNet models and found that enabling decomposition comes with a small cost (1.77% and 0.85% for top-1 and top-5 accuracy, respectively). Also, building a model by reusing or replacing modules can be done with a 2.3% and 0.5% average loss of accuracy. Furthermore, reusing and replacing these modules reduces CO2e emission by ∼37 times compared to training the model from scratch.’’

Written on December 10, 2021