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Josiah Hanna

jphanna [at] cs.utexas.edu
Department of Computer Science
The University of Texas at Austin

I am a fifth year PhD student in the Learning Agents Research Group in the Computer Science Department at the University of Texas at Austin. My advisor is Peter Stone.

I study a branch of machine learning called reinforcement learning (RL). Reinforcement learning allows autonomous agents to learn to complete sequential decision making tasks given only a reward signal and interaction with their environment. The goal of my current research is to allow AI software to use past or simulated experience on a sequential decision making task to evaluate and improve upon its current ability to solve the task. My long-term research goal is to develop AI systems that can quickly master a new task with a small number of attempts at the task.

I graduated from the University of Kentucky with a B.S. in computer science and mathematics. As an undergraduate I worked with Judy Goldsmith on algorithms for multi-objective and factored Markov Decision Processes. I also spent a summer working with Patrice Perny and Paul Weng at LIP6 in Paris, France working on approximating the set of Pareto optimal solutions for multi-objective MDPs.

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