Action-outcome contingencies as the engine of open-ended learning: computational models and developmental experiments

Gianluca Baldassarre, Francesco Mannella, Vieri Giuliano Santucci, Eszter Somogyi, Lisa Jacquey, Mollie Hamilton, J. Kevin O'Regan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

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Abstract

Open-ended learning allows humans and robots to autonomously acquire an increasingly large repertoire of skills, that later can allow them to produce suitable actions to achieve desirable effects in the environment ('goals'). Empirical evidence from developmental psychology suggests that a pivotal mechanism possibly driving open-ended learning is represented by action-outcome contingencies. Here we propose a specific hypothesis, expressed in the form of a blueprint cognitive architecture, that sketches the general mechanisms through which contingency-based open-ended learning might take place. According to this hypothesis, the matching (or distance) between a desired goal and the actual effect produced by the action can be used to drive the learning of both the motor skill used to accomplish the goal and the internal representation of the action outcome. We report here a computational model that implements the hypothesis and we illustrate two developmental psychology experiments related to the presented theory. Overall the model and experiments show the soundness of the hypothesis and represent a start towards validating it experimentally.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2018 Joint IEEE 8th International Conference on Development and Learning and Epigenetic Robotics, ICDL-EpiRob 2018
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Pages46-53
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-5386-6110-9
ISBN (Print)978-1-5386-6111-6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jul 2019
EventJoint 8th IEEE International Conference on Development and Learning and Epigenetic Robotics - Tokyo, Japan
Duration: 16 Sep 201820 Sep 2018

Publication series

NameIEEE ICDL-EpiRob Proceedings Series
PublisherIEEE
ISSN (Print)2161-9484
ISSN (Electronic)2161-9484

Conference

ConferenceJoint 8th IEEE International Conference on Development and Learning and Epigenetic Robotics
Abbreviated titleICDL-EpiRob 2018
Country/TerritoryJapan
CityTokyo
Period16/09/1820/09/18

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