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SOLAR: Deep Structured Representations for Model-Based Reinforcement Learning
Marvin Zhang · Sharad Vikram · Laura Smith · Pieter Abbeel · Matthew Johnson · Sergey Levine

Wed Jun 12 11:30 AM -- 11:35 AM (PDT) @ Hall B

Model-based reinforcement learning (RL) has proven to be a data efficient approach for learning control tasks but is difficult to utilize in domains with complex observations such as images. In this paper, we present a method for learning representations that are suitable for iterative model-based policy improvement, in that these representations are optimized for inferring simple dynamics and cost models given the data from the current policy. This enables a model-based RL method based on the linear-quadratic regulator (LQR) to be used for systems with image observations. We evaluate our approach on a suite of robotics tasks, including manipulation tasks on a real Sawyer robot arm directly from images, and we find that our method results in better final performance than other model-based RL methods while being significantly more efficient than model-free RL.

Author Information

Marvin Zhang (UC Berkeley)
Sharad Vikram (UCSD)
Laura Smith (UC Berkeley)
Pieter Abbeel (OpenAI / UC Berkeley)
Matthew Johnson (Google Brain)
Sergey Levine (UC Berkeley)
Sergey Levine

Sergey Levine received a BS and MS in Computer Science from Stanford University in 2009, and a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Stanford University in 2014. He joined the faculty of the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences at UC Berkeley in fall 2016. His work focuses on machine learning for decision making and control, with an emphasis on deep learning and reinforcement learning algorithms. Applications of his work include autonomous robots and vehicles, as well as computer vision and graphics. His research includes developing algorithms for end-to-end training of deep neural network policies that combine perception and control, scalable algorithms for inverse reinforcement learning, deep reinforcement learning algorithms, and more.

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