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Atharv Shah

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What is VGGNET ??

It is a type of convolutional neural network architecture proposed by K. Simonyan and A. Zisserman from the University of Oxford in the paper “Very Deep Convolutional Networks for Large-Scale Image Recognition.

So how it is different from LeNet , AlexNet ??

As we have seen in previous [Alex Net](“") blog, it requires lot of parameters and which very time for training . So here the number of parameters are reduced because of its optimal architecture which ultimately reduces the training time . There are multiple types of VGGNET (vgg16,vgg19 etc) , they can be modified on the category of the problem .

Now let’s understand the architecture of it



Image reference –

The core concepts is , all convolutional layers are of size 3*3 and maxpool kernel are of size 2*2, So here instead of making kernel size (11*11,5*5,3*3) in Alex net, here its helping us in reducing the parameters .

After that it has fully connected layers at the end , and in total 16 layers are there .



Training follows the same procedure as all previous networks as :-

a) It is carried away by optimizing using mini batch gradient descent(instead of taking all data points , will take the batches of points from training dataset), using it will momentum .

b) Training is regularized by L2 penalty and dropout regularization , which basically means dropping some percentage of neuron from every layer at each epoch or iteration ( try to relate it with Bagging/bootstrap aggregation or random forest ) .

c) Learning rate decay : Decreasing the learning rate by factor of 10 , if accuracy or any other performance metrics stops improving .

d ) Pre-initialization - Initialization of weights are important , because bad initialization can read many problem such as gradient vanishing , stalling of learning rate , gradient exploding etc , random initializing can be done by glorot_uniform , glorot_normal , he_uniform , he_uniform and many more .


Here the first fully connected (FC) layer is replaced by 7*7 conv. and second and third FC by 1*1 conv.

Here the image directly gets the class score map which is the average of the vectors



It can implemented with different Framework like tensorflow, Keras , Pytorch , Mxnet , gluon , sonnet etc .

There are already implement modules which are trained on image-net dataset which can be used to train our model by doing some fine tuning depending upon the problem .

But what if dataset is very different from image-net dataset ??

Then we can simply implement it from scratch ,

Its very easy to implement in keras , my personal favorite is Tensorflow with keras .

Same models can be fine-tuned depending on the problem,

Fine tune basically means to use the bottleneck features , and make our own fully connected layers and output layer .

Let us see its implementation in Keras —-

For installation refer this link (

Here we are going to use keras on top of tensorflow.

from tensorflow.keras.applications import VGG16 
##Weights = pre-trained weight on image-net  ## include_top = TOP layer True or False 

(see documentation for reference)

Here we have imported the VGGNET module , we can customize according to our problems using transfer Learning (refer


VGG16 significantly outperforms the previous generation of models in the ILSVRC-2012 and ILSVRC-2013 competitions. The VGG16 result is also competing for the classification task winner (GoogLeNet with 6.7% error) and substantially outperforms the ILSVRC-2013 winning submission Clarifai, which achieved 11.2% with external training data and 11.7% without it. Concerning the single-net performance, VGG16 architecture achieves the best result (7.0% test error), outperforming a single GoogLeNet by 0.9%.


· Original research paper -

· Code in Keras from scratch –

About the author

Atharv Shah , is an undergrad pursuing Btech in computer science , he is fascinated by the artificial intelligence and it’s application used to solve real world problems .

Atharv Shah
Atharv Shah


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