Subgoal Search For Complex Reasoning Tasks

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 34 pre-proceedings (NeurIPS 2021)

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Konrad Czechowski, Tomasz Odrzygóźdź, Marek Zbysiński, Michał Zawalski, Krzysztof Olejnik, Yuhuai Wu, Lukasz Kucinski, Piotr Miłoś


Humans excel in solving complex reasoning tasks through a mental process of moving from one idea to a related one. Inspired by this, we propose Subgoal Search (kSubS) method. Its key component is a learned subgoal generator that produces a diversity of subgoals that are both achievable and closer to the solution. Using subgoals reduces the search space and induces a high-level search graph suitable for efficient planning. In this paper, we implement kSubS using a transformer-based subgoal module coupled with the classical best-first search framework. We show that a simple approach of generating $k$-th step ahead subgoals is surprisingly efficient on three challenging domains: two popular puzzle games, Sokoban and the Rubik's Cube, and an inequality proving benchmark INT. kSubS achieves strong results including state-of-the-art on INT within a modest computational budget.