Thanks! My current model is that
The frontal lobe does involve RL, and this is used to think high-value thoughts and take high-value actions;
One reason that thoughts / actions can be high-value is by acquiring valuable information, and one way they can do this is by directing saccades and attention towards parts of the visual field (or other sensory input) where valuable information is at;
That corresponding sensory input processing area is still doing predictive learning, but it uses a higher learning rate when it is the focus of top-down attention, and therefore tends to develop a rich pattern-recognizing vocabulary that is lopsidedly tailored towards recognizing the types of patterns that carry valuable information from the perspective of the RL-based frontal lobe.
So RL is involved, just a step removed. (Maybe my post title was bad. :-P ) Do you think that’s an adequate involvement of RL to explain those and other examples?
Maybe. :) I don’t have much of a position on “which part of the brain is the sensory processing-related reinforcement learning implemented in”, just on the original claim of “we shouldn’t expect to find RL involved in sensory processing”.
That’s fair; the first sentence now has a caveat to that effect. Thanks again!