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Online Limited Memory Neural-Linear Bandits with Likelihood Matching

Ofir Nabati · Tom Zahavy · Shie Mannor


Keywords: [ Reinforcement Learning and Planning ] [ Bandits ]


We study neural-linear bandits for solving problems where {\em both} exploration and representation learning play an important role. Neural-linear bandits harnesses the representation power of Deep Neural Networks (DNNs) and combines it with efficient exploration mechanisms by leveraging uncertainty estimation of the model, designed for linear contextual bandits on top of the last hidden layer. In order to mitigate the problem of representation change during the process, new uncertainty estimations are computed using stored data from an unlimited buffer. Nevertheless, when the amount of stored data is limited, a phenomenon called catastrophic forgetting emerges. To alleviate this, we propose a likelihood matching algorithm that is resilient to catastrophic forgetting and is completely online. We applied our algorithm, Limited Memory Neural-Linear with Likelihood Matching (NeuralLinear-LiM2) on a variety of datasets and observed that our algorithm achieves comparable performance to the unlimited memory approach while exhibits resilience to catastrophic forgetting.

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