"Search is a problem-solving technique that systematically explores a space of problem states, i.e., successive and alternative stages in the problem-solving process. Examples of problem states might include the different board configurations in a game or intermediate steps in a reasoning process. This space of alternative solutions is then searched to find an answer. Newell and Simon (1976) have argued that this is the essential basis of human problem solving. Indeed, when a chess player examines the effects of different moves or a doctor considers a number of alternative diagnoses, they are searching among alternatives."
– from Section 1.2 of Chapter One of George F. Luger's textbook, Artificial Intelligence: Structures and Strategies for Complex Problem Solving, 5th Edition (Addison-Wesley; 2005).
In this paper we propose a new algorithm for solving general two-player turn-taking games that performs symbolic search utilizing binary decision diagrams (BDDs). It consists of two stages: First, it determines all breadth-first search (BFS) layers using forward search and omitting duplicate detection, next, the solving process operates in backward direction only within these BFS layers thereby partitioning all BDDs according to the layers the states reside in. We provide experimental results for selected games and compare to a previous approach. This comparison shows that in most cases the new algorithm outperforms the existing one in terms of runtime and used memory so that it can solve games that could not be solved before with a general approach.
The no-wait flowshop scheduling problem is a variant of the classical permutation flowshop problem, with the additional constraint that jobs have to be processed by the successive machines without waiting time. To efficiently address this NP-hard combinatorial optimization problem we conduct an analysis of the structure of good quality solutions. This analysis shows that the No-Wait specificity gives them a common structure: they share identical sub-sequences of jobs, we call super-jobs. After a discussion on the way to identify these super-jobs, we propose IG-SJ, an algorithm that exploits super-jobs within the state-of-the-art algorithm for the classical permutation flowshop, the well-known Iterated Greedy (IG) algorithm. An iterative approach of IG-SJ is also proposed. Experiments are conducted on Taillard's instances. The experimental results show that exploiting super-jobs is successful since IG-SJ is able to find 64 new best solutions.
Weighted model integration (WMI) extends Weighted model counting (WMC) to the integration of functions over mixed discrete-continuous domains. It has shown tremendous promise for solving inference problems in graphical models and probabilistic programming. Yet, state-of-the-art tools for WMI are limited in terms of performance and ignore the independence structure that is crucial to improving efficiency. To address this limitation, we propose an efficient model integration algorithm for theories with tree primal graphs. We exploit the sparse graph structure by using search to performing integration. Our algorithm greatly improves the computational efficiency on such problems and exploits context-specific independence between variables. Experimental results show dramatic speedups compared to existing WMI solvers on problems with tree-shaped dependencies.
This paper proposes using a linear function approximator, rather than a deep neural network (DNN), to bias a Monte Carlo tree search (MCTS) player for general games. This is unlikely to match the potential raw playing strength of DNNs, but has advantages in terms of generality, interpretability and resources (time and hardware) required for training. Features describing local patterns are used as inputs. The features are formulated in such a way that they are easily interpretable and applicable to a wide range of general games, and might encode simple local strategies. We gradually create new features during the same self-play training process used to learn feature weights. We evaluate the playing strength of an MCTS player biased by learnt features against a standard upper confidence bounds for trees (UCT) player in multiple different board games, and demonstrate significantly improved playing strength in the majority of them after a small number of self-play training games.
Lifted inference scales to large probability models by exploiting symmetry. However, existing exact lifted inference techniques do not apply to general factor graphs, as they require a relational representation. In this work we provide a theoretical framework and algorithm for performing exact lifted inference on symmetric factor graphs by computing colored graph automorphisms, as is often done for approximate lifted inference. Our key insight is to represent variable assignments directly in the colored factor graph encoding. This allows us to generate representatives and compute the size of each orbit of the symmetric distribution. In addition to exact inference, we use this encoding to implement an MCMC algorithm that explores the space of orbits quickly by uniform orbit sampling.
We study the fabric spreading and cutting problem in apparel factories. For the sake of saving the material costs, the cutting requirement should be met exactly without producing additional garment components. For reducing the production costs, the number of lays that corresponds to the frequency of using the cutting beds should be minimized. We propose an iterated greedy algorithm for solving the fabric spreading and cutting problem. This algorithm contains a constructive procedure and an improving loop. Firstly the constructive procedure creates a set of lays in sequence, and then the improving loop tries to pick each lay from the lay set and rearrange the remaining lays into a smaller lay set. The improving loop will run until it cannot obtain any small lay set or the time limit is due. The experiment results on 500 cases shows that the proposed algorithm is effective and efficient.
Recent progress in reinforcement learning (RL) using self-game-play has shown remarkable performance on several board games (e.g., Chess and Go) as well as video games (e.g., Atari games and Dota2). It is plausible to consider that RL, starting from zero knowledge, might be able to gradually approximate a winning strategy after a certain amount of training. In this paper, we explore neural Monte-Carlo-Tree-Search (neural MCTS), an RL algorithm which has been applied successfully by DeepMind to play Go and Chess at a super-human level. We try to leverage the computational power of neural MCTS to solve a class of combinatorial optimization problems. Following the idea of Hintikka's Game-Theoretical Semantics, we propose the Zermelo Gamification (ZG) to transform specific combinatorial optimization problems into Zermelo games whose winning strategies correspond to the solutions of the original optimization problem. The ZG also provides a specially designed neural MCTS. We use a combinatorial planning problem for which the ground-truth policy is efficiently computable to demonstrate that ZG is promising.
I hope you found the last few posts on search easy to learn yet challenging enough to keep you going. I'd love to hear your feedback so I can improve these tutorials. So far we've been discussing the topic of search, but the breadth-first search algorithm we implemented is hardly'intelligent'; the algorithm follows a simple set of rules to reach its goal state. To have the machine make more reasoned'choices', we need to go beyond blindly following these rules. This week we'll put more of the I into AI with a new topic: stochastic models.
In this paper, we introduce a method to compute a sparse lattice planner control set that is suited to a particular task by learning from a representative dataset of vehicle paths. To do this, we use a scoring measure similar to the Fr\'echet distance and propose an algorithm for evaluating a given control set according to the scoring measure. Control actions are then selected from a dense control set according to an objective function that rewards improvements in matching the dataset while also encouraging sparsity. This method is evaluated across several experiments involving real and synthetic datasets, and it is shown to generate smaller control sets when compared to the previous state-of-the-art lattice control set computation technique, with these smaller control sets maintaining a high degree of manoeuvrability in the required task. This results in a planning time speedup of up to 4.31x when using the learned control set over the state-of-the-art computed control set. In addition, we show the learned control sets are better able to capture the driving style of the dataset in terms of path curvature.
As deep learning continues to make progress for challenging perception tasks, there is increased interest in combining vision, language, and decision-making. Specifically, the Vision and Language Navigation (VLN) task involves navigating to a goal purely from language instructions and visual information without explicit knowledge of the goal. Recent successful approaches have made in-roads in achieving good success rates for this task but rely on beam search, which thoroughly explores a large number of trajectories and is unrealistic for applications such as robotics. In this paper, inspired by the intuition of viewing the problem as search on a navigation graph, we propose to use a progress monitor developed in prior work as a learnable heuristic for search. We then propose two modules incorporated into an end-to-end architecture: 1) A learned mechanism to perform backtracking, which decides whether to continue moving forward or roll back to a previous state (Regret Module) and 2) A mechanism to help the agent decide which direction to go next by showing directions that are visited and their associated progress estimate (Progress Marker). Combined, the proposed approach significantly outperforms current state-of-the-art methods using greedy action selection, with 5% absolute improvement on the test server in success rates, and more importantly 8% on success rates normalized by the path length. Our code is available at https://github.com/chihyaoma/regretful-agent .