First published: 2013/12/21 (7 years ago) Abstract: The recently introduced dropout training criterion for neural networks has
been the subject of much attention due to its simplicity and remarkable
effectiveness as a regularizer, as well as its interpretation as a training
procedure for an exponentially large ensemble of networks that share
parameters. In this work we empirically investigate several questions related
to the efficacy of dropout, specifically as it concerns networks employing the
popular rectified linear activation function. We investigate the quality of the
test time weight-scaling inference procedure by evaluating the geometric
average exactly in small models, as well as compare the performance of the
geometric mean to the arithmetic mean more commonly employed by ensemble
techniques. We explore the effect of tied weights on the ensemble
interpretation by training ensembles of masked networks without tied weights.
Finally, we investigate an alternative criterion based on a biased estimator of
the maximum likelihood ensemble gradient.