Optimization of directed acyclic graph (DAG) structures has many applications, such as neural architecture search (NAS) and probabilistic graphical model learning. Encoding DAGs into real vectors is a dominant component in most neural-network-based DAG optimization frameworks. Currently, most DAG encoders use an asynchronous message passing scheme which sequentially processes nodes according to the dependency between nodes in a DAG. That is, a node must not be processed until all its predecessors are processed. As a result, they are inherently not parallelizable. In this work, we propose a Parallelizable Attention-based Computation structure Encoder (PACE) that processes nodes simultaneously and encodes DAGs in parallel. We demonstrate the superiority of PACE through encoder-dependent optimization subroutines that search the optimal DAG structure based on the learned DAG embeddings. Experiments show that PACE not only improves the effectiveness over previous sequential DAG encoders with a significantly boosted training and inference speed, but also generates smooth latent (DAG encoding) spaces that are beneficial to downstream optimization subroutines. Our source code is available at https://github.com/zehao-dong/PACE.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5360-5377
Number of pages18
JournalProceedings of Machine Learning Research
StatePublished - 2022
Event39th International Conference on Machine Learning, ICML 2022 - Baltimore, United States
Duration: Jul 17 2022Jul 23 2022


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