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These are a few code snippets from a project I had to do. A description is in the original readme below. This was the first project that went a little bit overboard, I did not fix requirements at the beginning of it and demands were rather dynamically raised, hence the chaotic structure in a few files. This was the trigger that made me review SW architecture.

Originally I did write a GUI, but it turned out that this was meant to run a Linux server, so I canceled that. I deleted the main scripts and the results of course.

1. Introduction

1.1. Preface

This project implements a Gaussian hyperparameter tuning. It is suited for the ESPnet network or similar structures, and is meant to automatically tune hyperparameters.

Background knowledge on Gaussian hyperparameter tuning and the ESPnet can be obtained from the references and the appendix in the end of this file. This readme mainly aims at introducing on how this work is strucured, how to use it and how to properly troubleshoot/modify the file in case it should be adapted to new sets.

A more detailed explanation of the code is given in the doc/ directory, where another exists.

1.2. Content

  1. Introduction

    • 1.1. Preface
    • 1.2. Content
    • 1.3. The Directory Structure
  2. How to use the Interface

    • 2.1. The First Run
    • 2.2. Starting from the script
    • 2.3. Starting from the
  3. How to Modify Properly

    • 3.1. Adding or Deleting Options
    • 3.2. Hanging in New Benchmark
  4. Troubleshooting

  5. Desicions Made

  6. Sources

    • 6.1. Related Papers
    • 6.2. Useful Links

1.3. The Directory Strucure

The directories are the following:

  • /src This is the main code, where the terminal and the optimizing code sit in.

  • /utils Auxiliary functions such as parsers are stored in here. Furthermore, the current program status is stored in here.

  • /log This is where the logging takes place, i.e. each test run setting and the parameters are stored in here.

  • /eval Here is an auxiliary python-notebook to evaluate the results. Of course it can be modified by the user.

  • /doc Here is a documentation of the code as well as a few refences and reads.

Furthermore, there might be a folder with the virtual environment.

2. How to use the Interface

2.1. The First Run

When running the program, at first it loads all the standard settings provided by the Tedlium data set. Additional settings are also provided during this step, such as how many GPUs will be used and path settings. The settings are both in the

src/initialize.ini utils/

, where the settings in the are only loaded if the initialize.ini does not exist. Before you run the program please make sure at least the following parameters:

  • path_to_run
  • backend
  • n_gpu

, where the path_to_run will be the path starting in the root folder and into one of the folders of ESPnet that contains a file, e.g. /home/robert/espnet/an4/asr1/.

Additionally, in the


there are bounds given for the trainable parameters. Please adjust the bounds to your needs if necessary.

When running the first also, the script stops after training, because the Gaussian Process Regressor from sklearn needs at least two samples to run. Let the test stop and give it the next point by writing the desired parameters into the initialize.ini. After this, the script should be able to run through without any problem.

2.2. Starting from the script

The interface has two runnable modes, an interactive mode and a normal mode. The interactive mode starts with the parameter


, when thereafter the parameters can be handed over to the tool. The interactive mode provides a "manual". In normal mode, the parameters are just handed over. It is recommended to use the script, since this gives an overview of all possible parameters. All parameters can be shown by the --help option, emphasis shall be put on

--n_interations # the number of iterations --network # the network type, e.g. tedlium, an4 or freudnet

For adding or removing options see section 3.1.

2.3. Starting from the

The is the main starting script. The parameters are all taken from the tedlium benchmark of ESPnet. In order to run the test simply run this file.

Please note: It first executes a virtual environment. In case you deleted that or did change it you have to change that line.

3. How to Modify Properly

3.1 Adding or Deleting Options

All possible main options are in the utils/ script, where they come in the form of a dictionary. The main key of that dictionary is the parameter, followed by an initial value (that is used if no src/initialize.ini exists), its type and possible bounds. Since the Gaussian Process Regressor can only work with numerical values, only those are made trainable.

A list of non-trainable numerical values exists in the first few lines of the script, when the parameters are loaded.

Hence, adding or deleting parameters goes by simply adding or deleting entries in the dictionary. Please make sure that the parameter name must match the key of the dictionary. Trainable parameters must furthermore have upper and lower bounds, please follow the structure given by the other entries.

3.2 Hanging in New Benchmark

When inserting a new benchmark, a few adjustments have to be made. First of all, please make sure that the results can properly be parsed. The current parser, which parses the result.txt of the ESPnet results, is the function parse_result in utils/

Also, the folder where the results are in have to be found. Here, again the structure of ESPnet is assumed: The path where the is in should have a folder called 'exp/', in the the result folders are saved. Then, the folder with the result is being found in that with the function get_path_to_result in utils/ Currently, this function assumes a 'test' in the folder, because ESPnet throws out two folders, distinct in the beginning: one says test, the says train. Obviously, we want the test-folder in the ESPnet setting.

4. Troubleshooting

When the result.txt cannot be found in the log-folder

This happens when the espnet could not execute succesfully. In this please try to check the input to espnet. Examples would be to set the upper and lower bounds correctly, as a non-defined may have been handed over. Do not forget to rewrite the current value in the initialize.ini, if it is wrong at this moment.

Test is being Aborted After Training

This can have three possible (here discussed) roots:

  • You started the first test with a new benchmark. In that case the test will stop after one training, and an src/initialize.ini file will be written. Open this file, and give the tool a new point by at least altering one of the trainable parameters. Then, the tests should be able to run through thereafter

  • One of the parameters is in a forbidden domain. E.g. the number of layers of a neural network can not be negative, or a learning rate cannot be larger than 1. Please adjust the boundaries accordingly in the utils/ and put the out-of-range parameter in the src/initialize.ini in a good domain again.

  • Something went wrong with the neural network or benchmark to train, and the file with the results could not be found. Please make sure a correct execution of those trainings.

5. Choices Made on Optimization


The kernel utilized by the tool is choosable, but here a Matern kernel is used. This Kernel has been proposed by Snoek et al., [1] and proven to be working with several setups including convolutional neural networks. Please note that the parameters of the kernel do not have to be tuned, as the GaussianProcessRegressor-object does this by itself with the optional argument n_restarts_optimizer.

Acquisition Function

There are multiple acquisition functions possible, however, every serious source that was available the time this project finished used the expected improvement (EI). A discussion of possible acquisition functions can be found in the links "Discussion of Acquisition Functions".

Finding the Maximum

In order to maximize the EI the minimize function from the scipy library is being used. We switch the sign in the next_point function and then minimize. A for-loop with random sampled points is used, because the minimize-function uses gradient descent methods. That way local optima can be circumvented. The starting points are sampled with respect to the upper and lower bounds of the parameters, hence do not fall out of allowed domains. The number of sample points can be adjusted with n_minimize_restarts in hp_optimizer, which can be higher, because the cost of time for the gradient descent is marginal compared to the network trainings.

6. Sources

6.1. Related Papers

  • [1] Practical Bayesian Optimization of Machine Learning Algorithms, Snoek et al., arXiv:1206.2944, 2012
  • [2] Sequential Model-Based Optimization for General Algorithm Configuration, Hutter et al., LION, DOI: 10.1007/978-3-642.3_40, 2011
  • [3] A Tutorial on Bayesian Optimization, Frazier, arXiv:1807.02811, 2018

6.2. Useful Links


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