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Invited Talk #4: Multi-Agent Interaction and Online Optimization in RL
Igor Mordatch

Fri Dec 13 02:00 PM -- 02:30 PM (PST) @

AI and robotics have made inspiring progress over the recent years on training systems to solve specific, well-defined tasks. But the need to specify tasks bounds the level of complexity that can ultimately be reached in training with such an approach. The sharp distinction between training and deployment stages likewise limits the degree to which these systems can improve and adapt after training. In my talk, I will advocate for multi-agent interaction and online optimization processes as key ingredients to towards overcoming these limitations.

In the first part, I will show that through multi-agent competition, a simple objective such as hide-and-seek game, and standard reinforcement learning algorithms at scale, agents can create a self-supervised autocurriculum with multiple distinct rounds of emergent strategy, many of which require sophisticated tool use and coordination. Multi-agent interaction leads to behaviors that center around more human-relevant skills than other self-supervised reinforcement learning methods such as intrinsic motivation and holds promise of open-ended growth of complexity.

In the second part, I will argue for usefulness and generality of online optimization processes and show examples of incorporating them in model-based control and generative modeling contexts via energy-based models. I will show intriguing advantages, such as compositionality, robustness to distribution shift, non-stationarity, and adversarial attacks in generative modeling problems and planned exploration and fast adaptation to changing environments in control problems.

This is joint work with many wonderful colleagues and students at OpenAI, MIT, University of Washington, and UC Berkeley.

Author Information

Igor Mordatch (OpenAI)

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