TRAIL (Tokyo Robotics and AI Lab) は東京大学松尾豊研究室のサブグループです． 実世界での知能の実現を目指して，ロボット学習を中心とした研究開発活動を行なっています．
Tidying up a household environment using a mobile manipulator poses various challenges in robotics, such as adaptation to large real-world environmental variations, and safe and robust deployment in the presence of humans. The Partner Robot Challenge in World Robot Challenge (WRC) 2020, a global competition held in September 2021, benchmarked tidying tasks in real home environments, and, importantly, tested for full system performances. For this challenge, we developed an entire household service robot system, which leverages a data-driven approach to adapt to numerous edge cases that occur during the execution, instead of classical manual pre-programmed solutions. In this paper, we describe the core ingredients of the proposed robot system, including visual recognition, object manipulation, and motion planning. Our robot system won the second prize, verifying the effectiveness and potential of data-driven robot systems for mobile manipulation in home environments.
Progress in deep reinforcement learning (RL) research is largely enabled by benchmark task environments. However, analyzing the nature of those environments is often overlooked. In particular, we still do not have agreeable ways to measure the difficulty or solvability of a task, given that each has fundamentally different actions, observations, dynamics, rewards, and can be tackled with diverse RL algorithms. In this work, we propose policy information capacity (PIC) – the mutual information between policy parameters and episodic return – and policy-optimal information capacity (POIC) – between policy parameters and episodic optimality – as two environment-agnostic, algorithm-agnostic quantitative metrics for task difficulty. Evaluating our metrics across toy environments as well as continuous control benchmark tasks from OpenAI Gym and DeepMind Control Suite, we empirically demonstrate that these information-theoretic metrics have higher correlations with normalized task solvability scores than a variety of alternatives. Lastly, we show that these metrics can also be used for fast and compute-efficient optimizations of key design parameters such as reward shaping, policy architectures, and MDP properties for better solvability by RL algorithms without ever running full RL experiments.