Liquid Computing in a Simplified Model of Cortical Layer IV: Learning to Balance a Ball

D. Probst, W. Maass, H. Markram, and M. O. Gewaltig


We present a biologically inspired recurrent network of spiking neurons and a learning rule that enables the network to balance a ball on a flat circular arena and to steer it towards a target field, by controlling the inclination angles of the arena. The neural controller is a recurrent network of adaptive exponential integrate and fire neurons configured and connected to match properties of cortical layer IV. The network is used as a liquid state machine with four action cells as readout neurons. The solution of the task requires the controller to take its own reaction time into account by anticipating the future state of the controlled system. We demonstrate that the cortical network can robustly learn this task using a supervised learning rule that penalizes the error on the force applied to the arena

Reference: D. Probst, W. Maass, H. Markram, and M. O. Gewaltig. Liquid computing in a simplified model of cortical layer IV: Learning to balance a ball. In A. E. Villa, W. Duch, P. Erdi, F. Masulli, and G. Palm, editors, Proceedings of the 22nd International Conference on Artificial Neural Networks and Machine Learning - ICANN 2012, volume 7552 of Lecture Notes in Computer Science, pages 209-216. Springer, 2012.