Title: QM4MAS: a quality model for multi-agent systems

Authors: Toufik Marir; Farid Mokhati; Hassina Bouchlaghem-Seridi; Youghourta Acid; Maroua Bouzid

Addresses: Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, University of Oum El Bouaghi, Research Laboratory on Computer Science's Complex Systems (RELA(CS)2) Laboratory, B.P. 358 – 04000 Oum El Bouaghi, Algeria; Department of Computer Science, University of Annaba, BP 12 – 23000 – Annaba, Algeria ' Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, University of Oum El Bouaghi, Research Laboratory on Computer Science's Complex Systems (RELA(CS)2) Laboratory, B.P. 358 – 04000 Oum El Bouaghi, Algeria ' Department of Computer Science, LABGED Laboratory, University of Annaba, BP 12 – 23000 – Annaba, Algeria ' Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, University of Oum El Bouaghi, B.P. 358-04000 Oum El Bouaghi, Algeria ' University of Caen Basse-Normandie, Campus Côte de Nacre, Boulevard du Maréchal Juin, BP 5186 – 14032 Caen Cedex, France

Abstract: Multi-agent systems (MASs) are being increasingly used in complex and distributed applications development. Such applications should satisfy the requirements of users in terms of quality. Accordingly, it is important to assess the quality of such systems. In fact, several metrics have been proposed to assess different aspects of multi-agent systems. However, the lack of comprehensive quality model for multi-agent applications that combines the software's characteristics with the proposed metrics limits the usefulness of such metrics. In this paper, we propose an overall quality model for multi-agent-based software, called QM4MAS. An overall quality model gives a global view of the quality showing the relationships between its characteristics. The use of QM4MAS has two main objectives: 1) It allows defining and assessing the MAS quality; 2) it facilitates the maintenance of software product (high quality software is easier to maintain). The proposed model has been applied to JADE applications through a set of metrics. The assessment of JADE's proposed metrics can be done automatically using a tool we developed for this purpose.

Keywords: quality assurance; quality models; multi-agent systems; MAS quality; ISO 9126; JADE platform; dynamic metrics; agent-based systems; software maintenance.

DOI: 10.1504/IJCAT.2016.080485

International Journal of Computer Applications in Technology, 2016 Vol.54 No.4, pp.297 - 310

Received: 24 Feb 2015
Accepted: 13 Mar 2015

Published online: 25 Nov 2016 *

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