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In-Person Oral presentation / top 25% paper

DASHA: Distributed Nonconvex Optimization with Communication Compression and Optimal Oracle Complexity

Alexander Tyurin · Peter Richtarik


Abstract: We develop and analyze DASHA: a new family of methods for nonconvex distributed optimization problems. When the local functions at the nodes have a finite-sum or an expectation form, our new methods, DASHA-PAGE, DASHA-MVR and DASHA-SYNC-MVR, improve the theoretical oracle and communication complexity of the previous state-of-the-art method MARINA by Gorbunov et al. (2020). In particular, to achieve an $\varepsilon$-stationary point, and considering the random sparsifier Rand$K$ as an example, our methods compute the optimal number of gradients $\mathcal{O}\left(\frac{\sqrt{m}}{\varepsilon\sqrt{n}}\right)$ and $\mathcal{O}\left(\frac{\sigma}{\varepsilon^{3/2}n}\right)$ in finite-sum and expectation form cases, respectively, while maintaining the SOTA communication complexity $\mathcal{O}\left(\frac{d}{\varepsilon \sqrt{n}}\right)$. Furthermore, unlike MARINA, the new methods DASHA, DASHA-PAGE and DASHA-MVR send compressed vectors only, which makes them more practical for federated learning. We extend our results to the case when the functions satisfy the Polyak-Lojasiewicz condition. Finally, our theory is corroborated in practice: we see a significant improvement in experiments with nonconvex classification and training of deep learning models.

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