Decision S4: Efficient Sequence-Based RL via State Spaces LayersDownload PDF

Published: 01 Feb 2023, Last Modified: 28 Feb 2023ICLR 2023 posterReaders: Everyone
Keywords: Sequential RL, S4, Decision transformers
TL;DR: Replacing transformers with state-space layers for RL modeling. Also extended to on-policy training.
Abstract: Recently, sequence learning methods have been applied to the problem of off-policy Reinforcement Learning, including the seminal work on Decision Transformers, which employs transformers for this task. Since transformers are parameter-heavy, cannot benefit from history longer than a fixed window size, and are not computed using recurrence, we set out to investigate the suitability of the S4 family of models, which are based on state-space layers and have been shown to outperform transformers, especially in modeling long-range dependencies. In this work, we present two main algorithms: (i) an off-policy training procedure that works with trajectories, while still maintaining the training efficiency of the S4 model. (ii) An on-policy training procedure that is trained in a recurrent manner, benefits from long-range dependencies, and is based on a novel stable actor-critic mechanism. Our results indicate that our method outperforms multiple variants of decision transformers, as well as the other baseline methods on most tasks, while reducing the latency, number of parameters, and training time by several orders of magnitude, making our approach more suitable for real-world RL
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