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Ce Zhang

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Learning to Adapt CLIP for Few-Shot Monocular Depth Estimation

Nov 02, 2023
Xueting Hu, Ce Zhang, Yi Zhang, Bowen Hai, Ke Yu, Zhihai He

Pre-trained Vision-Language Models (VLMs), such as CLIP, have shown enhanced performance across a range of tasks that involve the integration of visual and linguistic modalities. When CLIP is used for depth estimation tasks, the patches, divided from the input images, can be combined with a series of semantic descriptions of the depth information to obtain similarity results. The coarse estimation of depth is then achieved by weighting and summing the depth values, called depth bins, corresponding to the predefined semantic descriptions. The zero-shot approach circumvents the computational and time-intensive nature of traditional fully-supervised depth estimation methods. However, this method, utilizing fixed depth bins, may not effectively generalize as images from different scenes may exhibit distinct depth distributions. To address this challenge, we propose a few-shot-based method which learns to adapt the VLMs for monocular depth estimation to balance training costs and generalization capabilities. Specifically, it assigns different depth bins for different scenes, which can be selected by the model during inference. Additionally, we incorporate learnable prompts to preprocess the input text to convert the easily human-understood text into easily model-understood vectors and further enhance the performance. With only one image per scene for training, our extensive experiment results on the NYU V2 and KITTI dataset demonstrate that our method outperforms the previous state-of-the-art method by up to 10.6\% in terms of MARE.

* Accepted by WACV 2024 
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Object-centric Video Representation for Long-term Action Anticipation

Oct 31, 2023
Ce Zhang, Changcheng Fu, Shijie Wang, Nakul Agarwal, Kwonjoon Lee, Chiho Choi, Chen Sun

This paper focuses on building object-centric representations for long-term action anticipation in videos. Our key motivation is that objects provide important cues to recognize and predict human-object interactions, especially when the predictions are longer term, as an observed "background" object could be used by the human actor in the future. We observe that existing object-based video recognition frameworks either assume the existence of in-domain supervised object detectors or follow a fully weakly-supervised pipeline to infer object locations from action labels. We propose to build object-centric video representations by leveraging visual-language pretrained models. This is achieved by "object prompts", an approach to extract task-specific object-centric representations from general-purpose pretrained models without finetuning. To recognize and predict human-object interactions, we use a Transformer-based neural architecture which allows the "retrieval" of relevant objects for action anticipation at various time scales. We conduct extensive evaluations on the Ego4D, 50Salads, and EGTEA Gaze+ benchmarks. Both quantitative and qualitative results confirm the effectiveness of our proposed method.

* This is an accepted WACV 2024 paper. Our code is available at 
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Laughing Hyena Distillery: Extracting Compact Recurrences From Convolutions

Oct 28, 2023
Stefano Massaroli, Michael Poli, Daniel Y. Fu, Hermann Kumbong, Rom N. Parnichkun, Aman Timalsina, David W. Romero, Quinn McIntyre, Beidi Chen, Atri Rudra, Ce Zhang, Christopher Re, Stefano Ermon, Yoshua Bengio

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Recent advances in attention-free sequence models rely on convolutions as alternatives to the attention operator at the core of Transformers. In particular, long convolution sequence models have achieved state-of-the-art performance in many domains, but incur a significant cost during auto-regressive inference workloads -- naively requiring a full pass (or caching of activations) over the input sequence for each generated token -- similarly to attention-based models. In this paper, we seek to enable $\mathcal O(1)$ compute and memory cost per token in any pre-trained long convolution architecture to reduce memory footprint and increase throughput during generation. Concretely, our methods consist in extracting low-dimensional linear state-space models from each convolution layer, building upon rational interpolation and model-order reduction techniques. We further introduce architectural improvements to convolution-based layers such as Hyena: by weight-tying the filters across channels into heads, we achieve higher pre-training quality and reduce the number of filters to be distilled. The resulting model achieves 10x higher throughput than Transformers and 1.5x higher than Hyena at 1.3B parameters, without any loss in quality after distillation.

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Deja Vu: Contextual Sparsity for Efficient LLMs at Inference Time

Oct 26, 2023
Zichang Liu, Jue Wang, Tri Dao, Tianyi Zhou, Binhang Yuan, Zhao Song, Anshumali Shrivastava, Ce Zhang, Yuandong Tian, Christopher Re, Beidi Chen

Large language models (LLMs) with hundreds of billions of parameters have sparked a new wave of exciting AI applications. However, they are computationally expensive at inference time. Sparsity is a natural approach to reduce this cost, but existing methods either require costly retraining, have to forgo LLM's in-context learning ability, or do not yield wall-clock time speedup on modern hardware. We hypothesize that contextual sparsity, which are small, input-dependent sets of attention heads and MLP parameters that yield approximately the same output as the dense model for a given input, can address these issues. We show that contextual sparsity exists, that it can be accurately predicted, and that we can exploit it to speed up LLM inference in wall-clock time without compromising LLM's quality or in-context learning ability. Based on these insights, we propose DejaVu, a system that uses a low-cost algorithm to predict contextual sparsity on the fly given inputs to each layer, along with an asynchronous and hardware-aware implementation that speeds up LLM inference. We validate that DejaVu can reduce the inference latency of OPT-175B by over 2X compared to the state-of-the-art FasterTransformer, and over 6X compared to the widely used Hugging Face implementation, without compromising model quality. The code is available at

* Proceedings of the 40th International Conference on Machine Learning, 2023, 919  
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Effective and Efficient Federated Tree Learning on Hybrid Data

Oct 18, 2023
Qinbin Li, Chulin Xie, Xiaojun Xu, Xiaoyuan Liu, Ce Zhang, Bo Li, Bingsheng He, Dawn Song

Federated learning has emerged as a promising distributed learning paradigm that facilitates collaborative learning among multiple parties without transferring raw data. However, most existing federated learning studies focus on either horizontal or vertical data settings, where the data of different parties are assumed to be from the same feature or sample space. In practice, a common scenario is the hybrid data setting, where data from different parties may differ both in the features and samples. To address this, we propose HybridTree, a novel federated learning approach that enables federated tree learning on hybrid data. We observe the existence of consistent split rules in trees. With the help of these split rules, we theoretically show that the knowledge of parties can be incorporated into the lower layers of a tree. Based on our theoretical analysis, we propose a layer-level solution that does not need frequent communication traffic to train a tree. Our experiments demonstrate that HybridTree can achieve comparable accuracy to the centralized setting with low computational and communication overhead. HybridTree can achieve up to 8 times speedup compared with the other baselines.

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In-Context Few-Shot Relation Extraction via Pre-Trained Language Models

Oct 17, 2023
Yilmazcan Ozyurt, Stefan Feuerriegel, Ce Zhang

Relation extraction aims at inferring structured human knowledge from textual documents. State-of-the-art methods based on language models commonly have two limitations: (1) they require named entities to be either given as input or infer them, which introduces additional noise, and (2) they require human annotations of documents. As a remedy, we present a novel framework for in-context few-shot relation extraction via pre-trained language models. To the best of our knowledge, we are the first to reformulate the relation extraction task as a tailored in-context few-shot learning paradigm. Thereby, we achieve crucial benefits in that we eliminate the need for both named entity recognition and human annotation of documents. Unlike existing methods based on fine-tuning, our framework is flexible in that it can be easily updated for a new set of relations without re-training. We evaluate our framework using DocRED, the largest publicly available dataset for document-level relation extraction, and demonstrate that our framework achieves state-of-the-art performance. Finally, our framework allows us to identify missing annotations, and we thus show that our framework actually performs much better than the original labels from the development set of DocRED.

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DSG: An End-to-End Document Structure Generator

Oct 13, 2023
Johannes Rausch, Gentiana Rashiti, Maxim Gusev, Ce Zhang, Stefan Feuerriegel

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Information in industry, research, and the public sector is widely stored as rendered documents (e.g., PDF files, scans). Hence, to enable downstream tasks, systems are needed that map rendered documents onto a structured hierarchical format. However, existing systems for this task are limited by heuristics and are not end-to-end trainable. In this work, we introduce the Document Structure Generator (DSG), a novel system for document parsing that is fully end-to-end trainable. DSG combines a deep neural network for parsing (i) entities in documents (e.g., figures, text blocks, headers, etc.) and (ii) relations that capture the sequence and nested structure between entities. Unlike existing systems that rely on heuristics, our DSG is trained end-to-end, making it effective and flexible for real-world applications. We further contribute a new, large-scale dataset called E-Periodica comprising real-world magazines with complex document structures for evaluation. Our results demonstrate that our DSG outperforms commercial OCR tools and, on top of that, achieves state-of-the-art performance. To the best of our knowledge, our DSG system is the first end-to-end trainable system for hierarchical document parsing.

* Accepted at ICDM 2023 
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Towards General and Efficient Online Tuning for Spark

Sep 05, 2023
Yang Li, Huaijun Jiang, Yu Shen, Yide Fang, Xiaofeng Yang, Danqing Huang, Xinyi Zhang, Wentao Zhang, Ce Zhang, Peng Chen, Bin Cui

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The distributed data analytic system -- Spark is a common choice for processing massive volumes of heterogeneous data, while it is challenging to tune its parameters to achieve high performance. Recent studies try to employ auto-tuning techniques to solve this problem but suffer from three issues: limited functionality, high overhead, and inefficient search. In this paper, we present a general and efficient Spark tuning framework that can deal with the three issues simultaneously. First, we introduce a generalized tuning formulation, which can support multiple tuning goals and constraints conveniently, and a Bayesian optimization (BO) based solution to solve this generalized optimization problem. Second, to avoid high overhead from additional offline evaluations in existing methods, we propose to tune parameters along with the actual periodic executions of each job (i.e., online evaluations). To ensure safety during online job executions, we design a safe configuration acquisition method that models the safe region. Finally, three innovative techniques are leveraged to further accelerate the search process: adaptive sub-space generation, approximate gradient descent, and meta-learning method. We have implemented this framework as an independent cloud service, and applied it to the data platform in Tencent. The empirical results on both public benchmarks and large-scale production tasks demonstrate its superiority in terms of practicality, generality, and efficiency. Notably, this service saves an average of 57.00% memory cost and 34.93% CPU cost on 25K in-production tasks within 20 iterations, respectively.

* Proceedings of the VLDB Endowment 2023  
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BDC-Adapter: Brownian Distance Covariance for Better Vision-Language Reasoning

Sep 03, 2023
Yi Zhang, Ce Zhang, Zihan Liao, Yushun Tang, Zhihai He

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Large-scale pre-trained Vision-Language Models (VLMs), such as CLIP and ALIGN, have introduced a new paradigm for learning transferable visual representations. Recently, there has been a surge of interest among researchers in developing lightweight fine-tuning techniques to adapt these models to downstream visual tasks. We recognize that current state-of-the-art fine-tuning methods, such as Tip-Adapter, simply consider the covariance between the query image feature and features of support few-shot training samples, which only captures linear relations and potentially instigates a deceptive perception of independence. To address this issue, in this work, we innovatively introduce Brownian Distance Covariance (BDC) to the field of vision-language reasoning. The BDC metric can model all possible relations, providing a robust metric for measuring feature dependence. Based on this, we present a novel method called BDC-Adapter, which integrates BDC prototype similarity reasoning and multi-modal reasoning network prediction to perform classification tasks. Our extensive experimental results show that the proposed BDC-Adapter can freely handle non-linear relations and fully characterize independence, outperforming the current state-of-the-art methods by large margins.

* Accepted by BMVC 2023 
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BenchTemp: A General Benchmark for Evaluating Temporal Graph Neural Networks

Aug 31, 2023
Qiang Huang, Jiawei Jiang, Xi Susie Rao, Ce Zhang, Zhichao Han, Zitao Zhang, Xin Wang, Yongjun He, Quanqing Xu, Yang Zhao, Chuang Hu, Shuo Shang, Bo Du

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To handle graphs in which features or connectivities are evolving over time, a series of temporal graph neural networks (TGNNs) have been proposed. Despite the success of these TGNNs, the previous TGNN evaluations reveal several limitations regarding four critical issues: 1) inconsistent datasets, 2) inconsistent evaluation pipelines, 3) lacking workload diversity, and 4) lacking efficient comparison. Overall, there lacks an empirical study that puts TGNN models onto the same ground and compares them comprehensively. To this end, we propose BenchTemp, a general benchmark for evaluating TGNN models on various workloads. BenchTemp provides a set of benchmark datasets so that different TGNN models can be fairly compared. Further, BenchTemp engineers a standard pipeline that unifies the TGNN evaluation. With BenchTemp, we extensively compare the representative TGNN models on different tasks (e.g., link prediction and node classification) and settings (transductive and inductive), w.r.t. both effectiveness and efficiency metrics. We have made BenchTemp publicly available at

* 28 pages, 23 figures, 27 tables. Submitted to the Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems 2023 Track on Datasets and Benchmarks 
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