How does our motor system solve the problem of anticipatory control in spite of a wide spectrum of response dynamics from different musculo-skeletal systems, transport delays as well as response latencies throughout the central nervous system? To a great extent, our highly-skilled motor responses are a result of a reactive feedback system, originating in the brain-stem and spinal cord, combined with a feed-forward anticipatory system, that is adaptively fine-tuned by sensory experience and originates in the cerebellum. Based on that interaction we design the counterfactual predictive control (CFPC) architecture, an anticipatory adaptive motor control scheme in which a feed-forward module, based on the cerebellum, steers an error feedback controller with counterfactual error signals. Those are signals that trigger reactions as actual errors would, but that do not code for any current of forthcoming errors. In order to determine the optimal learning strategy, we derive a novel learning rule for the feed-forward module that involves an eligibility trace and operates at the synaptic level. In particular, our eligibility trace provides a mechanism beyond co-incidence detection in that it convolves a history of prior synaptic inputs with error signals. In the context of cerebellar physiology, this solution implies that Purkinje cell synapses should generate eligibility traces using a forward model of the system being controlled. From an engineering perspective, CFPC provides a general-purpose anticipatory control architecture equipped with a learning rule that exploits the full dynamics of the closed-loop system.
Despite recent successes in control theoretical programs for limb control, behavior-based cognitive approaches for control are somewhat lacking behind. Insights in psychology and neuroscience suggest that the most important ingredients for a successful developmental approach to control are anticipatory mechanisms and hierarchical structures. Anticipatory mechanisms are beneficial in handling noisy sensors, bridging sensory delays, and directing attention and action processing capacities. Moreover, action selection may be immediate using inverse modeling techniques. Hierarchies enable anticipatory influences on multiple levels of abstraction in time and space. This paper provides an overview over recent insights in anticipatory, hierarchical, cognitive behavioral mechanisms, reviews previous modeling approaches, and introduces a novel model well-suited to study hierarchical anticipatory behavioral control in simulated as well as real robotic control scenarios.
We develop a systems theoretical treatment of a behavioural system that interacts with its environment in a closed loop situation such that its motor actionsinfluence its sensor inputs. The simplest form of a feedback is a reflex. Reflexes occur always "too late"; i.e., only after a (unpleasant, painful,dangerous) reflex-eliciting sensor event has occurred. This defines an objective problem which can be solved if another sensor input exists which can predict the primary reflex and can generate an earlier reaction. In contrast to previous approaches, our linear learning algorithm allowsfor an analytical proof that this system learns to apply feedforward controlwith the result that slow feedback loops are replaced by their equivalent feed-forward controller creating a forward model. In other words, learning turns the reactive system into a proactive system. By means of a robot implementation we demonstrate the applicability of the theoretical results which can be used in a variety of different areas in physics and engineering.
Humans demonstrate a remarkable ability to generate accurate and appropriate motor behavior under many different and oftpn uncprtain environmental conditions. This paper describes a new modular approach tohuman motor learning and control, baspd on multiple pairs of inverse (controller) and forward (prpdictor) models. This architecture simultaneously learns the multiple inverse models necessary for control as well as how to select the inverse models appropriate for a given em'ironm0nt. Simulationsof object manipulation demonstrates the ability to learn mUltiple objects, appropriate generalization to novel objects and the inappropriate activation of motor programs based on visual cues, followed by online correction, seen in the "size-weight illusion".