Scaling up and Stabilizing Differentiable Planning with Implicit Differentiation


Differentiable planning promises end-to-end differentiability and adaptivity. However, an issue prevents it from scaling up to larger-scale problems: they need to differentiate through forward iteration layers to compute gradients, which couples forward computation and backpropagation and needs to balance forward planner performance and computational cost of the backward pass. To alleviate this issue, we propose to differentiate through the Bellman fixed-point equation to decouple forward and backward passes for Value Iteration Network and its variants, which enables constant backward cost (in planning horizon) and flexible forward budget and helps scale up to large tasks. We study the convergence stability, scalability, and efficiency of the proposed implicit version of VIN and its variants and demonstrate their superiority on a range of planning tasks: 2D navigation, visual navigation, and 2-DOF manipulation in configuration space and workspace.

In ICLR 2023
Linfeng Zhao
Linfeng Zhao
CS Ph.D. Student

I am a CS Ph.D. student at Khoury College of Computer Sciences of Northeastern University, advised by Prof. Lawson L.S. Wong. My research interests include reinforcement learning, artificial intelligence, and robotics.