Reinforcement learning for embodied agents is a challenging problem. The accumulated reward to be optimized is often a very rugged function, and gradient methods are impaired by many local optimizers. We demonstrate, in an experimental setting, that incorporating an intrinsic reward can smoothen the optimization landscape while preserving the global optimizers of interest. We show that policy gradient optimization for locomotion in a complex morphology is significantly improved when supplementing the extrinsic reward by an intrinsic reward defined in terms of the mutual information of time consecutive sensor readings.
- Pub Date:
- May 2016
- Computer Science - Artificial Intelligence;
- Computer Science - Robotics;
- Mathematics - Optimization and Control;
- Statistics - Machine Learning;
- 10 pages, 4 figures, 8 pages appendix