In this paper, we present an integral pre-training framework based on masked image modeling (MIM). We advocate for pre-training the backbone and neck jointly so that the transfer gap between MIM and downstream recognition tasks is minimal. We make two technical contributions. First, we unify the reconstruction and recognition necks by inserting a feature pyramid into the pre-training stage. Second, we complement mask image modeling (MIM) with masked feature modeling (MFM) that offers multi-stage supervision to the feature pyramid. The pre-trained models, termed integrally pre-trained transformer pyramid networks (iTPNs), serve as powerful foundation models for visual recognition. In particular, the base/large-level iTPN achieves an 86.2%/87.8% top-1 accuracy on ImageNet-1K, a 53.2%/55.6% box AP on COCO object detection with 1x training schedule using Mask-RCNN, and a 54.7%/57.7% mIoU on ADE20K semantic segmentation using UPerHead -- all these results set new records. Our work inspires the community to work on unifying upstream pre-training and downstream fine-tuning tasks. Code and the pre-trained models will be released at https://github.com/sunsmarterjie/iTPN.
In this paper, we propose multi-agent automated machine learning (MA2ML) with the aim to effectively handle joint optimization of modules in automated machine learning (AutoML). MA2ML takes each machine learning module, such as data augmentation (AUG), neural architecture search (NAS), or hyper-parameters (HPO), as an agent and the final performance as the reward, to formulate a multi-agent reinforcement learning problem. MA2ML explicitly assigns credit to each agent according to its marginal contribution to enhance cooperation among modules, and incorporates off-policy learning to improve search efficiency. Theoretically, MA2ML guarantees monotonic improvement of joint optimization. Extensive experiments show that MA2ML yields the state-of-the-art top-1 accuracy on ImageNet under constraints of computational cost, e.g., $79.7\%/80.5\%$ with FLOPs fewer than 600M/800M. Extensive ablation studies verify the benefits of credit assignment and off-policy learning of MA2ML.