AAAI Publications, Workshops at the Twenty-Ninth AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence

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A Minimax Robust Approach for Learning to Assist Users with Pointing Tasks
Sima Behpour, Brian Ziebart

Last modified: 2015-04-01


Learning to provide appropriate assistance to people indifferent situations is an extremely important, but insufficientlyinvestigated machine learning task. Applications includehuman-robot and human-computer interactions settings to maximizing the benefits of assistive technologies. Three key challenges must be overcome to appropriately address this task: Complexity: the space of possible assistive policies can be very large, making many existing methods (e.g., fromreinforcement learning) too data inefficient to be practical. Noise and misspecification: observed human behavior is often noisy and parametric formulations that reduce complexity will typically suffer from model misspecification,leading to unboundedly sub-optimal assistance. Biasedness: data available for learning a model is biased by previously provided assistive actions, violating the typical assumptions of supervised learning. We develop a general framework for learning to assist in single intervention settings. The framework narrows the search for effective assistance by viewing previous behavior under assistance through a restricted set of statistics. Assistive policies for the worst-case context-assistance-outcome relationships satisfying these statistics are obtained. We embed the problem of learning how to assist users in cursor based target pointing tasks into this framework and outline its usage.


assistive technologies; human-computer interaction; robust estimation machine learning

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