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Logarithmic Regret for Adversarial Online Control

Dylan Foster · Max Simchowitz

Keywords: [ Online Learning / Bandits ] [ Reinforcement Learning Theory ] [ Reinforcement Learning - Theory ]

Abstract: We introduce a new algorithm for online linear-quadratic control in a known system subject to adversarial disturbances. Existing regret bounds for this setting scale as $\sqrt{T}$ unless strong stochastic assumptions are imposed on the disturbance process. We give the first algorithm with logarithmic regret for arbitrary adversarial disturbance sequences, provided the state and control costs are given by known quadratic functions. Our algorithm and analysis use a characterization for the optimal offline control law to reduce the online control problem to (delayed) online learning with approximate advantage functions. Compared to previous techniques, our approach does not need to control movement costs for the iterates, leading to logarithmic regret.

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