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What is Reinforcement Learning and How Does It Function?

  /  Machine Learning   /  What is Reinforcement Learning and How Does It Function?
Reinforcement learning

What is Reinforcement Learning and How Does It Function?

What are the capabilities of Reinforcement Learning?

Reinforcement learning (RL) is a subset of machine learning (ML). It allows an agent to learn through the repercussions of actions in a specific ecosystem. It can be used to train a robot with new tricks. It is a behavioral learning model where the algorithm offers data analysis feedback, directing the user to get the best outcome.

It varies from other forms of supervised learning as the sample data set does not train the machine. It learns by trial and error, instead. Hence, a series of right decisions would reinforce the method because it better solves the problem.

Reinforce learning is similar to what we have in our childhood. We all go through reinforcement when we start crawling and try to get up. We fall over and over, but our parents are there to lift and teach us. The teaching is based on experience in which the machine must deal with what went wrong before and try for the right approach.

We don’t describe the reward policy, which is game rules, but we don’t give the model any tips or advice on how to resolve the game. It is on the model to understand how to execute the task to optimize the reward, starting with random testing and sophisticated strategies.

RL is the most effective way to indicate computer imagination by exploiting research power and multiple attempts. Unlike human beings, artificial intelligence (AI) will obtain knowledge from thousands of side games. On the other hand, an RL algorithm runs on robust computer infrastructure.

For example, reinforced learning (RL) is the recommendation on YouTube. After watching a video, the platform will recommend similar contents that you believe you may like. If you start watching the recommendation and do not go through the entire video, the machine understands that the recommendation is not suitable and tries another approach next time.


Challenges of Reinforcement Learning

RL’s critical challenge is to plan the simulation environment that relies heavily on the task to be performed. If trained in chess or Atari games, preparation for the simulation environment is relatively easy. Making a model capable of driving an autonomous car is essential to creating a realistic prototype before allowing the vehicle to ride the street. This model should decide how to break or prevent a collision in a safe environment. Delivering the model from the training setting to the real world becomes troublesome.

Another problem is scaling and modifying the agent’s neural network. There is hardly a way to connect with the network except by incentives and penalties. It is likely to lead to disastrous forgetfulness, where collecting new information causes some of the ancient knowledge to be omitted from the network. In short, we must keep learning the agent’s memory.

Another obstacle is reaching a great location where the agent executes its mission, but not in the ideal or required manner. A perfect example is a ‘hopper’ jumping, like a kangaroo, instead of doing what is expected of him.


Applications of Reinforcement Learning


There is a fascinating job in the application of reinforcement learning in robotics. Reading a paper with the outcome of RL research in robotics is highly recommended. In the other work, the researchers taught a robot about policies to navigate raw videos and images to the robot’s actions. The RGB images were fed into a CNN, and the results were the engine torques. The RL element was policy research guided to generate training data from its state distribution.

Deep Learning

Impressive results have come out from recent attempts to combine RL and other deep learning architectures.

Deepmind’s pioneering work to combine CNN with RL is one of RL’s most influential jobs. The agent can see the environment through high-dimensional sensors and then learn to communicate with it.

People try CNN with an RL combination to try out new ideas. RNN is a type of neural network which has memories. RNN offers agents the ability to memorize things when it is combined with RL. For instance, they combined LSTM with RL to create a deep recurring Q network (DRQN) for playing Atari 2600 games. They also applied LSTM with RL to solve problems in optimizing chemical reactions.

In addition to industry, RL is used widely in various fields, such as advertising, management, health, finance, education, image, and text recognition.

Reinforcement is done with rewards as per the decision made. It is possible to learn consistently from interactions with the environment seamlessly. With each right action, you will have positive rewards and penalties for wrong decisions. This type of learning can help the industry to optimize processes, simulations, monitoring, maintenance, and the control of autonomous systems.