Natural beings undergo a morphological development process of their bodies while they are learning and adapting to the environments they face from infancy to adulthood. In fact, this is the period where the most important learning processes, those that will support learning as adults, will take place. However, in artificial systems, this interaction between morphological development and learning, and its possible advantages, have seldom been considered. In this line, this paper seeks to provide some insights into how morphological development can be harnessed in order to facilitate learning in embodied systems facing tasks or domains that are hard to learn. In particular, here we will concentrate on whether morphological development can really provide any advantage when learning complex tasks and whether its relevance towards learning increases as tasks become harder. To this end, we present the results of some initial experiments on the application of morphological development to learning to walk in three cases, that of a quadruped, a hexapod and that of an octopod. These results seem to confirm that as task learning difficulty increases the application of morphological development to learning becomes more advantageous.
Title of host publication
Proceedings of the 15th International Conference on Hybrid Artificial Intelligence Systems : HAIS2020
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