Resource Usage and Performance Trade-offs for Machine Learning Models in Smart Environments

Sensors (Basel). 2020 Feb 20;20(4):1176. doi: 10.3390/s20041176.


The application of artificial intelligence enhances the ability of sensor and networking technologies to realize smart systems that sense, monitor and automatically control our everyday environments. Intelligent systems and applications often automate decisions based on the outcome of certain machine learning models. They collaborate at an ever increasing scale, ranging from smart homes and smart factories to smart cities. The best performing machine learning model, its architecture and parameters for a given task are ideally automatically determined through a hyperparameter tuning process. At the same time, edge computing is an emerging distributed computing paradigm that aims to bring computation and data storage closer to the location where they are needed to save network bandwidth or reduce the latency of requests. The challenge we address in this work is that hyperparameter tuning does not take into consideration resource trade-offs when selecting the best model for deployment in smart environments. The most accurate model might be prohibitively expensive to computationally evaluate on a resource constrained node at the edge of the network. We propose a multi-objective optimization solution to find acceptable trade-offs between model accuracy and resource consumption to enable the deployment of machine learning models in resource constrained smart environments. We demonstrate the feasibility of our approach by means of an anomaly detection use case. Additionally, we evaluate the extent that transfer learning techniques can be applied to reduce the amount of training required by reusing previous models, parameters and trade-off points from similar settings.

Keywords: hyperparameter tuning; machine learning; resource optimization; smart environments.