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Reinforcement Learning by Relative Entropy Policy Search

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http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons84135

Peters,  J
Department Empirical Inference, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Dept. Empirical Inference, Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems, Max Planck Society;

http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons84097

Mülling,  K
Department Empirical Inference, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons83782

Altun,  Y
Department Empirical Inference, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Peters, J., Mülling, K., & Altun, Y. (2010). Reinforcement Learning by Relative Entropy Policy Search.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0013-BF56-A
Abstract
Policy search is a successful approach to reinforcement learning. However, policy improvements often result in the loss of information. Hence, it has been marred by premature convergence and implausible solutions. As first suggested in the context of covariant policy gradients, many of these problems may be addressed by constraining the information loss. In this book chapter, we continue this path of reasoning and suggest the Relative Entropy Policy Search (REPS) method. The resulting method differs significantly from previous policy gradient approaches and yields an exact update step. It works well on typical reinforcement learning benchmark problems. We will also present a real-world applications where a robot employs REPS to learn how to return balls in a game of table tennis.