Repairing Deep Neural Networks: Fix Patterns and Challenges

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Islam, Md Johirul
Pan, Rangeet
Nguyen, Giang
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Rajan, Hridesh
Professor and Department Chair of Computer Science
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Computer Science

Computer Science—the theory, representation, processing, communication and use of information—is fundamentally transforming every aspect of human endeavor. The Department of Computer Science at Iowa State University advances computational and information sciences through; 1. educational and research programs within and beyond the university; 2. active engagement to help define national and international research, and 3. educational agendas, and sustained commitment to graduating leaders for academia, industry and government.

The Computer Science Department was officially established in 1969, with Robert Stewart serving as the founding Department Chair. Faculty were composed of joint appointments with Mathematics, Statistics, and Electrical Engineering. In 1969, the building which now houses the Computer Science department, then simply called the Computer Science building, was completed. Later it was named Atanasoff Hall. Throughout the 1980s to present, the department expanded and developed its teaching and research agendas to cover many areas of computing.

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Significant interest in applying Deep Neural Network (DNN) has fueled the need to support engineering of software that uses DNNs. Repairing software that uses DNNs is one such unmistakable SE need where automated tools could be beneficial; however, we do not fully understand challenges to repairing and patterns that are utilized when manually repairing DNNs. What challenges should automated repair tools address? What are the repair patterns whose automation could help developers? Which repair patterns should be assigned a higher priority for building automated bug repair tools? This work presents a comprehensive study of bug fix patterns to address these questions. We have studied 415 repairs from Stack overflow and 555 repairs from Github for five popular deep learning libraries Caffe, Keras, Tensorflow, Theano, and Torch to understand challenges in repairs and bug repair patterns. Our key findings reveal that DNN bug fix patterns are distinctive compared to traditional bug fix patterns; the most common bug fix patterns are fixing data dimension and neural network connectivity; DNN bug fixes have the potential to introduce adversarial vulnerabilities; DNN bug fixes frequently introduce new bugs; and DNN bug localization, reuse of trained model, and coping with frequent releases are major challenges faced by developers when fixing bugs. We also contribute a benchmark of 667 DNN (bug, repair) instances.


This preprint is made available through arXiv:

Wed Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 2020