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Low-Bit DNN Training with Hardware-Efficient Stochastic Rounding Unit Design
Sung-En Chang · Geng Yuan · Alec Lu · Mengshu Sun · Yanyu Li · Xiaolong Ma · Yanyue Xie · Minghai Qin · Xue Lin · Zhenman Fang · Yanzhi Wang

Sat Jul 23 07:00 AM (PDT) @
Stochastic rounding is crucial in the training of low-bit deep neural networks (DNNs) to achieve high accuracy. Unfortunately, prior studies require a large number of high-precision stochastic rounding units (SRUs) to guarantee the low-bit DNN accuracy, which involves considerable hardware overhead. In this paper, we propose an automated framework to explore hardware-efficient low-bit SRUs (ESRUs) that can still generate high-quality random numbers to guarantee the accuracy of low-bit DNN training. Experimental results using state-of-the-art DNN models demonstrate that, compared to the prior 24-bit SRU with 24-bit pseudo random number generator (PRNG), our 8-bit ESRU~with 3-bit PRNG reduces the SRU resource usage by $9.75\times$ while achieving a higher accuracy.

Author Information

Sung-En Chang (Northeastern University)
Geng Yuan (Northeastern University)
Alec Lu (Simon Fraser University )
Mengshu Sun (Northeastern University)
Yanyu Li (Northeastern University)
Xiaolong Ma (Northeastern University)
Yanyue Xie (Northeastern University)
Minghai Qin (Western Digital Research)
Xue Lin (Northeastern University)
Zhenman Fang (Simon Fraser University)
Yanzhi Wang (Northeastern University)

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