The Didactronic Toolkit came about as a way to investigate ideas about formulating reinforcement learning problems using group theory. Its name, didactronic, is a contraction of the "didact" part of the word didactic, appended with the suffix "-tronic".
- a) designed or intended to teach, b) intended to convey instruction and information as well as pleasure and entertainment didactic poetry.
- Greek: a suffix referring to a device, tool, or instrument; more generally, used in the names of any kind of chamber or apparatus used in experiments.
Therefore the term Didactronic signifies an instrument or apparatus intended to teach or convey instruction to an agent through experiments; this is the essence of reinforcement learning. The Didactronic Toolkit is meant to provide the basic tools to build such an instrument for an arbitrary task. However, since the toolkit is meant to be independent of domain, it must be both useful enough to simplify the task while being generic enough not to constrain it. The goal of this article is to distill reinforcement learning into its most basic elements to provide insight into the design philosophy behind the toolkit. The secondary objective of this work is to provide a vehicle for learning the Rust language. To that end, the Didactronic Toolkit will be re-implemented as a crate in Rust.