International Journal of Agent-Oriented Software Engineering (11 papers in press)
BathTUB Team Description Multi-Agent Programming Contest 2016
by Axel Heßler
Abstract: Team BathTUB reports on their approach to the complex scenario of multi-modal logistics in the agent programming contest 2016. The solution has been created by beginners in multi-agent programming using the JIAC agent framework.
Keywords: Agent-Oriented Software Engineering; Multi-Agent Programming; Multi-Modal Logistics; JIAC.
Special Issue on: EMAS 2015 Agent-based System Engineering
Modeling Agent Oriented Solutions for the SmartGrid
by Jorge J. Gomez-Sanz, Sandra Garcia-Rodriguez, Nuria Cuartero-Soler
Abstract: This paper contributes with an decentralised agent design for a Microgrid that uses agent technology for avoiding dumping the excess of energy to a main powerline. The agent design is made with INGENIAS. The agents connect with a Microgrid simulator, the SGSimulator, and issue commands to control different distributed renewable energy sources. The paper illustrates the benefits of coordination of agents in such scenario through a simple token based protocol.
Keywords: AOSE; SmartGrid; Design; Microgrid; Coordination.
Quantitative analysis of multi-agent systems through statistical verification of simulation traces
by Benjamin Herd, Simon Miles, Peter McBurney, Michael Luck
Abstract: Due to their immense complexity, large-scale multiagent systems are often not amenable to exhaustive formal verification. Statistical approaches that focus on the verification of individual traces can provide an interesting alternative. However, due to its focus on finite execution paths, trace-based verification is inherently limited to certain types of correctness properties. We show how, by combining sampling with the idea of trace fragmentation, statistical verification can be used to answer interesting quantitative correctness questions about multiagent systems at different observational levels. The usefulness of the verification approach is illustrated with a simple case study from the area of swarm robotics.
Keywords: Multiagent systems; Agent-based simulation; Verification; Statistical model checking; Quantitative analysis.
An Agent Programming Manifesto
by Brian Logan
Abstract: There has been considerable progress in both the theory and practice of agent programming since Georgeff & Rao's seminal work on the Belief-Desire-Intention paradigm. However, despite increasing interest in the development of autonomous systems, applications of agent programming are confined to a small number of niche areas, and adoption of agent programming languages in mainstream software development remains limited. This state of affairs is widely acknowledged within the community, and a number of reasons and remedies have been proposed. In this paper, I present an analysis of why agent programming has failed to make an impact that is rooted in the class of programming problems agent programming sets out to solve, namely the realisation of flexible intelligent behaviour in dynamic and unpredictable environments. Based on this analysis, I outline some suggestions for the future direction of agent programming, and some principles that I believe any successful future direction must follow. rn
Keywords: intelligent agents; belief-desire-intention; BDI; agent programming.
Validating MAS Analysis Models with the ASEME Methodology
by Nikolaos Spanoudakis, Efthymios Floros, Nektarios Mitakidis, Pavlos Delias
Abstract: When designing agent-oriented software, engineers consider performance-related non-functional requirements. To this end, performance engineering practices provide a useful toolbox. In particular, simulation of the system's processes appears eminently suitable. However, agent-oriented software engineering methodologies are not directly linked to process simulation features. This paper extends an AOSE methodology for transforming agent roles models to process models, and for streamlining the transformation process towards simulation. Our method allows diverse process model generation, aiming to support the process simulation, and was integrated into a model-driven engineering methodology. We used an established process modelling notation (BPMN) as the target language for the process model, and we are able to deliver a ready-to-simulate model. Through simulation, an analyst can validate specific system requirements and test scenarios of how the system scales beyond the current requirements. Furthermore, because of process models familiarity within the business domain, engineers, managers and stakeholders can seamlessly communicate system designs.
Keywords: Agent-oriented software engineering; AOSE methodology; process models; BPMN; business process modeling notation; simulation; system validation; scaling; model-driven engineering;.
Special Issue on: EMAS 2016 Multiagent Systems Engineering and Applications
Augmenting Agent Computational Environments with Quantitative Reasoning Modules and Customizable Bridge Rules
by Stefania Costantini, Andrea Formisano
Abstract: There are many examples where large amounts of data might be potentially accessible to an agent, but the agent is constrained by the available budget since access to knowledge bases is subject to fees. Also, there are several activities that an agent might plan and perform on the web where one or more stages imply the payment of fees. For instance, consider the issue of buying resources in a cloud computing context where the objective of the agent is to obtain the best possible configuration of a certain application within given budget constraints. In this paper we consider the software-engineering problem of how to practically empower agents with the capability to perform budget-constrained reasoning in a uniform and principled way. To this aim, we enhance the ACE component-based agent architecture by means of a device for practical and computationally affordable quantitative reasoning, whose results actually determine one or more courses of agent's actions, also according to policies/preferences. We further enhance the ACE framework by making the agent-components interaction mechanism parametric with respect to the actual modules that an agent may dynamically decide to exploit. We discuss the proposed extensions on a realistic case-study.
Keywords: Processes and methodologies for MAS development; Software architectures and design patterns for MAS; Declarative approaches to engineering agents systems.
Special Issue on: IJAOSE MAPC 2016 Agents in the City
Team PUCRS: a Decentralised Multi-Agent Solution for the Agents in the City Scenario
by Rafael C. Cardoso, Ramon Fraga Pereira, Guilherme Krzisch, Maurício C. Magnaguagno, Túlio Baségio, Felipe Meneguzzi
Abstract: The 2016 edition of the Multi-Agent Programming Contest used the Agents in the City as its new scenario, which consisted on the execution of various logistics tasks within a realistic city topology using a number of different vehicle types. The complexity of the scenario and variety of tasks posed a challenging problem suitable for a decentralised multi-agent solution. In this paper we describe the winning solution for the contest, providing insights into how we designed our solution and organised our team, as well as some discussion on a few of our matches.
Keywords: Multi-Agent Programming Contest; Decentralised Multi-Agent Systems; Agents in the City; Contract Net Protocol; JaCaMo.
The Flisvos-2016 multi-agent system
by Evangelos Sarmas
Abstract: This paper presents the workings of the Flisvos-2016 multi-agent system that participated in the Multi-Agent Programming Contest MAPC 2016 of Clausthal TU.
Keywords: Flisvos; multi-agent system; multi-agent programming; contest; MAPC.
Multi-Agent Programming Contest 2016
by Tobias Ahlbrecht, Niklas Fiekas, Jürgen Dix
Abstract: We present the eleventh edition of the Multi-Agent Programming Contest, an annual, community-serving competition that attracts groups from all over the world. Our contest enables head-to-head comparison of multi-agent systems and supports educational efforts in their design and implementation. The long-term aim is to evaluate the specific features of agent programming languages and to compare them to more traditional languages.
Keywords: multi-agent systems; programming contest; multi-agent simulation;.
Multi-Agent Programming Contest 2016 - The Python-DTU Team
by Jørgen Villadsen, Andreas Halkjær From, Salvador Jacobi, Nikolaj Nøkkentved Larsen
Abstract: We provide a detailed description of the Python-DTU system, including the overall system design and the tools used in the agent contest.
Keywords: Multi-Agent Systems; MAS Programming; Contest.
Multi-Agent Programming Contest 2016: lampe Team Description
by Philipp Czerner, Jonathan Pieper
Abstract: In this paper we describe our participation in the 2016 edition of the Multi-Agent Programming Contest as team 'lampe', which was developed in C++ without the use of any agent-specific technology. It utilizes a centralised approach focusing on planning a job's completion in advance.
Keywords: Multi-Agent Programming Contest; MAPC; multi-agent systems; MAS.