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Speaker: Prof. Rebecca Willett, Statistics and CS, University of Chicago  

Title: The Role of Linear Layers in Nonlinear Interpolating Networks  

Abstract: In this discussion, we will explore the implicit bias of overparameterized neural networks of depth greater than two layers. Our framework considers a family of networks of varying depth that all have the same capacity but different implicitly defined representation costs. The representation cost of a function induced by a neural network architecture is the minimum sum of squared weights needed for the network to represent the function; it reflects the function space bias associated with the architecture. Our results show that adding linear layers to a ReLU network yields a representation cost that reflects a complex interplay between the alignment and sparsity of ReLU units. Specifically, using a neural network to fit training data with minimum representation cost yields an interpolating function that is constant in directions perpendicular to a low-dimensional subspace on which a parsimonious interpolant exists. This is joint work with Greg Ongie.

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