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A Modular On-line Profit Sharing Approach in Multiagent Domains
How to coordinate the behaviors of the agents through learning is a challenging problem within multi-agent domains. Because of its complexity, recent work has focused on how coordinated strategies can be learned. Here we are interested in using reinforcement learning techniques to learn the coordinated actions of a group of agents, without requiring explicit communication among them. However, traditional reinforcement learning methods are based on the assumption that the environment can be modeled as Markov Decision Process, which usually cannot be satisfied when multiple agents coexist in the same environment. Moreover, to effectively coordinate each agent-s behavior so as to achieve the goal, it-s necessary to augment the state of each agent with the information about other existing agents. Whereas, as the number of agents in a multiagent environment increases, the state space of each agent grows exponentially, which will cause the combinational explosion problem. Profit sharing is one of the reinforcement learning methods that allow agents to learn effective behaviors from their experiences even within non-Markovian environments. In this paper, to remedy the drawback of the original profit sharing approach that needs much memory to store each state-action pair during the learning process, we firstly address a kind of on-line rational profit sharing algorithm. Then, we integrate the advantages of modular learning architecture with on-line rational profit sharing algorithm, and propose a new modular reinforcement learning model. The effectiveness of the technique is demonstrated using the pursuit problem.
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