Hierarchically Organized Latent Modules for Exploratory Search in Morphogenetic Systems
NeurIPS 2020 (Oral, top 1% submissions)| abstract | webpage | pdf | publication | poster | oral talk | code |
I am a first year PhD student in Machine Learning under the supervision of Pierre-Yves Oudeyer in the FLOWERS team at Inria, Bordeaux; and in collaboration with the Poietis company, working on applying curiosity-driven machine learning to assist discovery in a laser-assisted bioprinting morphogenetic system.
My research focuses on developing curiosity-driven AI agents that can autonomously discover and learn a diversity of structures and skills in their environments. In particular, I am interested in learning modular representations that can dynamically adapt to the environment complexity. I am also very excited about applying those (curiosity-driven) ML algorithms to the exploration of physicochemical and biological systems.
Previously, I have been at University College of London where I completed my Master of Science (MSc) in computer vision and at Télécom Paristech where I did my Master of Engineering (MEng). I also spent a year as an AI research intern at Siemens Healthineers, Princeton N.J., working on deep learning and reinforcement learning algorithms for healthcare.
Self-organization of complex morphological patterns from local interactions is a fascinating phenomenon in many natural and artificial systems. In the artificial world, typical examples of such morphogenetic systems are cellular automata. Yet, their mechanisms are often very hard to grasp and so far scientific discoveries of novel patterns have primarily been relying on manual tuning and ad hoc exploratory search. The problem of automated diversity-driven discovery in these systems was recently introduced [26,62], highlighting that two key ingredients are autonomous exploration and unsupervised representation learning to describe
relevant degrees of variations in the patterns. In this paper, we motivate the need for what we call Meta-diversity search, arguing that there is not a unique ground truth interesting diversity as it strongly depends on the final observer and its motives. Using a continuous game-of-life system for experiments, we provide empirical evidences that relying on monolithic architectures for the behavioral embedding design tends to bias the final discoveries (both for hand-defined and unsupervisedly-learned features) which are unlikely to be aligned with the interest of a final end-user. To address these issues, we introduce a novel dynamic and modular architecture that enables unsupervised learning of a hierarchy of diverse representations. Combined with intrinsically motivated goal exploration algorithms, we show that this system forms a discovery assistant that can efficiently adapt its diversity search towards preferences of a user using only a very small amount of user feedback.
Designing agent that can autonomously discover and learn a diversity of structures and skills in unknown changing environments is key for lifelong machine learning. A central challenge is how to learn incrementally representations in order to progressively build a map of the discovered structures and re-use it to further explore. To address this challenge, we identify and target several key functionalities. First, we aim to build lasting representations and avoid catastrophic forgetting throughout the exploration process. Secondly we aim to learn a diversity of representations allowing to discover a “diversity of diversity” of structures (and associated skills) in complex high-dimensional environments. Thirdly, we target representations that can structure the agent discoveries in a coarse-to-fine manner. Finally, we target the reuse of such representations to drive exploration toward an “interesting” type of diversity, for instance leveraging human guidance. Current approaches in state representation learning rely generally on monolithic architectures which do not enable all these functionalities. Therefore, we present a novel technique to progressively construct a Hierarchy of Observation Latent Models for Exploration Stratification, called HOLMES. This technique couples the use of a dynamic modular model architecture for representation learning with intrinsically-motivated goal exploration processes (IMGEPs). The paper shows results in the domain of automated discovery of diverse self-organized patterns, considering as testbed the experimental framework from Reinke et al. (2019).
In many complex dynamical systems, artificial or natural, one can observe self-organization of patterns emerging from local rules. Cellular automata, like the Game of Life (GOL), have been widely used as abstract models enabling the study of various aspects of self-organization and morphogenesis, such as the emergence of spatially localized patterns. However, findings of self-organized patterns in such models have so far relied on manual tuning of parameters and initial states,and on the human eye to identify “interesting” patterns. In this paper, we formulate the problem of automated discovery of diverse self-organized patterns in such high-dimensional complex dynamical systems, as well as a framework for experimentation and evaluation. Using a continuous GOL as a testbed, we show that recent intrinsically-motivated machine learning algorithms (POP-IMGEPs), initially developed for learning of inverse models in robotics, can be transposed and used in this novel application area. These algorithms combine intrinsically-motivated goal exploration and unsupervised learning of goal space representations. Goal space representations describe the “interesting” features of patterns for which diverse variations should be discovered. In particular, we compare various approaches to define and learn goal space representations from the perspective of discovering diverse spatially localized patterns. Moreover, we introduce an extension of a state-of-the-art POP-IMGEP algorithm which incrementally learns a goal representation using a deep auto-encoder, and the use of CPPN primitives for generating initialization parameters. We show that it is more efficient than several baselines and equally efficient as a system pre-trained on a hand-made database of patterns identified by human experts
Nonlinear Adaptively Learned Optimization for Object Localization in 3D Medical Images
DLMIA workshop at MICCAI 2018, also abstract at MED-NEURIPS 2018abstract | pdf | publication | poster |
Precise localization of anatomical structures in 3D medical images can support several tasks such as image registration, organ segmentation, lesion quantification and abnormality detection. This work proposes a novel method, based on deep reinforcement learning, to actively learn to localize an object in the volumetric scene. Given the parameterization of the sought object, an intelligent agent learns to optimize the parameters by performing a sequence of simple control actions. We show the applicability of our method by localizing boxes (9 degrees of freedom) on a set of acquired MRI scans of the brain region. We achieve high speed and high accuracy detection results, with robustness to challenging cases. This method can be applied to a broad range of problems and easily generalized to other type of imaging modalities.