Computational Complexity of Learning Neural Networks: Smoothness and Degeneracy

Amit Daniely, Nathan Srebro, Gal Vardi

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

Abstract

Understanding when neural networks can be learned efficiently is a fundamental question in learning theory. Existing hardness results suggest that assumptions on both the input distribution and the network's weights are necessary for obtaining efficient algorithms. Moreover, it was previously shown that depth-2 networks can be efficiently learned under the assumptions that the input distribution is Gaussian, and the weight matrix is non-degenerate. In this work, we study whether such assumptions may suffice for learning deeper networks and prove negative results. We show that learning depth-3 ReLU networks under the Gaussian input distribution is hard even in the smoothed-analysis framework, where a random noise is added to the network's parameters. It implies that learning depth-3 ReLU networks under the Gaussian distribution is hard even if the weight matrices are non-degenerate. Moreover, we consider depth-2 networks, and show hardness of learning in the smoothed-analysis framework, where both the network parameters and the input distribution are smoothed. Our hardness results are under a well-studied assumption on the existence of local pseudorandom generators.

Original languageAmerican English
JournalAdvances in Neural Information Processing Systems
Volume36
StatePublished - 2023
Event37th Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems, NeurIPS 2023 - New Orleans, United States
Duration: 10 Dec 202316 Dec 2023
Conference number: 37

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Neural information processing systems foundation. All rights reserved.

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