A novel RL setting for non-Markovian systems

Ronen I. Brafman, Giuseppe De Giacomo, Regular decision processes, Artificial Intelligence, Volume 331, 2024 DOI: 10.1016/j.artint.2024.104113.

We introduce and study Regular Decision Processes (RDPs), a new, compact model for domains with non-Markovian dynamics and rewards, in which the dependence on the past is regular, in the language theoretic sense. RDPs are an intermediate model between MDPs and POMDPs. They generalize k-order MDPs and can be viewed as a POMDP in which the hidden state is a regular function of the entire history. In factored RDPs, transition and reward functions are specified using formulas in linear temporal logics over finite traces, or using regular expressions. This allows specifying complex dependence on the past using intuitive and compact formulas, and building models of partially observable domains without specifying an underlying state space.

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