Simple Object Representations

Example object masks for each object category in Atari Frostbite

We explore the benefits of augmenting state-of-the-art model-free deep reinforcement learning with simple object representations. Following the Frostbite challenge posited by Lake et al. (2017), we identify object representations as a critical cognitive capacity lacking from current reinforcement learning agents. We discover that providing the Rainbow model (Hessel et al., 2018) with simple, feature-engineered object representations substantially boosts its performance on the Frostbite game from Atari 2600. We then analyze the relative contributions of the representations of different types of objects, identify environment states where these representations are most impactful, and examine how these representations aid in generalizing to novel situations.

Published at CogSci 2020.

PhD Student

PhD student in Data Science by day, avid cook and Ultimate Frisbee player by night.