Decoupling State Representation Methods from Reinforcement Learning in Car Racing
- Conference Paper
In the quest for efficient and robust learning methods, combining unsupervised state representation learning and reinforcement learning (RL) could offer advantages for scaling RL algorithms by providing the models with a useful inductive bias. For achieving this, an encoder is trained in an unsupervised manner with two state representation methods, a variational autoencoder and a contrastive estimator. The learned features are then fed to the actor-critic RL algorithm Proximal Policy Optimization (PPO) to learn a policy for playing Open AI's car racing environment. Hence, such procedure permits to decouple state representations from RL-controllers. For the integration of RL with unsupervised learning, we explore various designs for variational autoencoders and contrastive learning. The proposed method is compared to a deep network trained directly on pixel inputs with PPO. The results show that the proposed method performs slightly worse than directly learning from pixel inputs; however, it has a more stable learning curve, a substantial reduction of the buffer size, and requires optimizing 88% fewer parameters. These results indicate that the use of pre-trained state representations has several benefits for solving RL tasks. © 2021 by SCITEPRESS – Science and Technology Publications, Lda. Show more
Book titleProceedings of the 13th International Conference on Agents and Artificial Intelligence
Pages / Article No.
SubjectDeep Reinforcement Learning; State Representation Learning; Variational Autoencoders; Constrastive Learning
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