Spatial navigation might appear to be a simple behavior, but closer inspection reveals that it is the complex result of many interacting sub-processes. We use deep reinforcement learning to understand how goal-directed behavior emerges in an artificial agent, how the deep neural network represents spatial information, and how the model's representations are related to neural codes for space in the hippocampus.
The Institut für Neuroinformatik (INI) is a central research unit of the Ruhr-Universität Bochum. We aim to understand the fundamental principles through which organisms generate behavior and cognition while linked to their environments through sensory systems and while acting in those environments through effector systems. Inspired by our insights into such natural cognitive systems, we seek new solutions to problems of information processing in artificial cognitive systems. We draw from a variety of disciplines that include experimental approaches from psychology and neurophysiology as well as theoretical approaches from physics, mathematics, electrical engineering and applied computer science, in particular machine learning, artificial intelligence, and computer vision.