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Distributional Policy Optimization: An Alternative Approach for Continuous Control

arXiv.org Artificial Intelligence

We identify a fundamental problem in policy gradient-based methods in continuous control. As policy gradient methods require the agent's underlying probability distribution, they limit policy representation to parametric distribution classes. We show that optimizing over such sets results in local movement in the action space and thus convergence to sub-optimal solutions. We suggest a novel distributional framework, able to represent arbitrary distribution functions over the continuous action space. Using this framework, we construct a generative scheme, trained using an off-policy actor-critic paradigm, which we call the Generative Actor Critic (GAC). Compared to policy gradient methods, GAC does not require knowledge of the underlying probability distribution, thereby overcoming these limitations. Empirical evaluation shows that our approach is comparable and often surpasses current state-of-the-art baselines in continuous domains.


Optimal Completion Distillation for Sequence Learning

arXiv.org Machine Learning

We present Optimal Completion Distillation (OCD), a training procedure for optimizing sequence to sequence models based on edit distance. OCD is efficient, has no hyper-parameters of its own, and does not require pretraining or joint optimization with conditional log-likelihood. Given a partial sequence generated by the model, we first identify the set of optimal suffixes that minimize the total edit distance, using an efficient dynamic programming algorithm. Then, for each position of the generated sequence, we use a target distribution that puts equal probability on the first token of all the optimal suffixes. OCD achieves the state-of-the-art performance on end-to-end speech recognition, on both Wall Street Journal and Librispeech datasets, achieving $9.3\%$ WER and $4.5\%$ WER respectively.


DeepMind papers at ICLR 2018 DeepMind

#artificialintelligence

Here you can read details of all DeepMind's accepted papers and find out where you can see the accompanying poster sessions and talks. We introduce a new algorithm for reinforcement learning called Maximum a posteriori Policy Optimisation (MPO) based on coordinate ascent on a relative entropy objective. We show that several existing methods can directly be related to our derivation. We develop two off-policy algorithms and demonstrate that they are competitive with the state-of-the-art in deep reinforcement learning. In particular, for continuous control, our method outperforms existing methods with respect to sample efficiency, premature convergence and robustness to hyperparameter settings.


Q-Learning in enormous action spaces via amortized approximate maximization

arXiv.org Artificial Intelligence

Applying Q-learning to high-dimensional or continuous action spaces can be difficult due to the required maximization over the set of possible actions. Motivated by techniques from amortized inference, we replace the expensive maximization over all actions with a maximization over a small subset of possible actions sampled from a learned proposal distribution. The resulting approach, which we dub Amortized Q-learning (AQL), is able to handle discrete, continuous, or hybrid action spaces while maintaining the benefits of Q-learning. Our experiments on continuous control tasks with up to 21 dimensional actions show that AQL outperforms D3PG (Barth-Maron et al, 2018) and QT-Opt (Kalashnikov et al, 2018). Experiments on structured discrete action spaces demonstrate that AQL can efficiently learn good policies in spaces with thousands of discrete actions.


Retrieving Sequential Information for Non-Autoregressive Neural Machine Translation

arXiv.org Artificial Intelligence

Non-Autoregressive Transformer (NAT) aims to accelerate the Transformer model through discarding the autoregressive mechanism and generating target words independently, which fails to exploit the target sequential information. Over-translation and under-translation errors often occur for the above reason, especially in the long sentence translation scenario. In this paper, we propose two approaches to retrieve the target sequential information for NAT to enhance its translation ability while preserving the fast-decoding property. Firstly, we propose a sequence-level training method based on a novel reinforcement algorithm for NAT (Reinforce-NAT) to reduce the variance and stabilize the training procedure. Secondly, we propose an innovative Transformer decoder named FS-decoder to fuse the target sequential information into the top layer of the decoder. Experimental results on three translation tasks show that the Reinforce-NAT surpasses the baseline NAT system by a significant margin on BLEU without decelerating the decoding speed and the FS-decoder achieves comparable translation performance to the autoregressive Transformer with considerable speedup.