Learning an Object-Based Memory System

Yilun Du, Joshua Tenenbaum, Tomas Lozano-Perez, Leslie Kaelbling

A robot operating in a household makes observations of multiple objects as it moves around over the course of days or weeks. The objects may be moved by inhabitants, but not completely at random. The robot may be called upon later to retrieve objects and will need a long-term object-based memory in order to know how to find them. In this paper, we combine some aspects of classic techniques for data-association filtering with modern attention-based neural networks to construct object-based memory systems that consume and produce high-dimensional observations and hypotheses. We perform end-to-end learning on labeled observation trajectories to learn both necessary internal transition and observation models. We demonstrate the system's effectiveness on a sequence of problem classes of increasing difficulty and show that it outperforms clustering-based methods, classic filters, and unstructured neural approaches.

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