AI Planning       

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AI Planning - overview


We create new planning algorithms and develop applications of planning to business areas such as risk management, defense, dialogue management, healthcare, cybersecurity, analytics and public transportation. 

 

What is AI Planning:

Planning is a long-standing sub-area of Artificial Intelligence (AI). Planning is the task of finding a procedural course of action for a declaratively described system to reach its goals while optimizing overall performance measures. Automated planners find the transformations to apply in each given state out of the possible transformations for that state. In contrast to the classification problem, planners provide guarantees on the solution quality.

 

Why is it Important: Planning Applications in Industry

  • Automation is an emerging trend that requires efficient automated planning
  • Many applications of planning in industry (e.g. robots and autonomous systems, cognitive assistants, cyber security, service composition)

How to Spot a Planning Problem

  • Declarative
    • You want to find a procedural course of action for a declaratively described system to reach its goals while optimizing overall performance measures.
  • Domain Knowledge can be elicited or learned over time
    • Existing domain knowledge can/should be exploited for building the model
    • Human involvement controllable. Humans build the model and can contribute to the solution by introducing knowledge.
  • Favor consistency over learning transient behaviors
    • There is a structure of the problem that cannot be learned just training
    • When no large training data is available
    • Changes in the problem can make previous data irrelevant

 

Advantages of AI Planning Techniques

  • When explainability is desired
    • When you want to be able to explain why a particular course of action was chosen
    • Assignment of responsibility/blame is essential for automation of processes (e.g., autonomous driving, medical expert systems)
  • Rapid prototyping: short time to solution
  • Variety of of-the-shelf planners available both IBM proprietary and open-source
  • Your problem is frequently changing, even small changes.
    • No need to change the solution, only tweak the model

 

Success Stories: When Planning Meets DL

In many real life applications, there is a structure of the problem that cannot be learned with DL (there are just not enough examples). Solving optimization problems with learning is hard, but integrating planning techniques with heuristic guidance learned by DL will result in the most famous success stories of AI to day.

  1. GO player AlphaGO uses planning (monte-carlo tree search) with deep learning (heuristic guidance) to select the next move
  2. Cognitive assistant Viv (Samsung) uses knowledge graph, planning, and deep learning to answer complicated queries

Example AI Planning Projects in IBM

ResearchHighlights

 

 

Contact Information: Shirin Sohrabi, ssohrabi@us.ibm.com