German Conference Series MATES on

Multiagent System Technologies

In cooperation with the SIG on Distributed Artificial Intelligence of the German Computer Society GI

September 22, 2003 (Monday)

14:00 - 18:00 Tutorial:  Interaction Protocol Engineering for Multiagent Systems

Lecturers: Marc-Philippe Huget (Agent ART Group, University of Liverpool, UK) and Jean-Luc Koning (Leibniz-Esisar, France)

Interaction is one of the key components in multiagent systems that enables the agents to coordinate in order for them to fulfil their tasks. The aim of this tutorial is to give a complete view of design of interaction protocols from the specification of requirements to executable versions of protocols. This tutorial is a practical one and relies on well-known protocols stemming from the research domain of multiagent systems like Contract Net protocol or English Auction protocol.

After a general introduction on interaction and a detailed one interaction in multiagent systems, we present a complete interaction protocol engineering from the analysis stage to the protocol synthesis and the validation of this synthesis.  This engineering advocated for interaction protocols in multiagent systems has been derived from communication protocol engineering in distributed systems.  We motivate this engineering approach on interaction protocols and then describe the whole life-cycle.

First, the protocol analysis stage, explains how to describe protocols and how to build a full specification of requirements.  Second, we focus on the formal description stage.  Contrary to the first stage which provides a natural language representation of a protocol, we deal here with formal methods for describing protocols, either coming from distributed systems (automata, Petri nets, LOTOS) or coming from multiagent systems (Agent-UML, Temporal logic).  Third, we tackle the validation issue, i.e., how to check properties on the obtained protocol.  There are essentially two methods for this purpose: reachability analysis and model checking.  We explain how one can make use of them.  Fourth, highlight how to an actual program from the formal description and explain what pitfalls appear from this stage and how to fix them.  Finally, we touch on how to validate and actual implement the protocols.  This conformance testing stage checks for flaws in the obtained program.

Tutorial attendees do not need to have any special background.  Practitioners will easily follow the tutorial since the basics are explained at the beginning of the tutorial. Moreover, researchers and practitioners from user interfaces and expert systems among others will find in this tutorial a set of techniques that could be of help for their research or development. By the end of the tutorial, attendees will know how to formally describe protocols and how to design them given an actual specification of requirements.


September 23, 2003 (Tuesday)

10:30 - 12:00 Session 1: Engineering Agent-Based Systems

The AEP Toolkit for Agent Design and Simulation.Joscha Bach and Ronnie Vuine (HU Berlin, Germany)

The AgentComponent Approach: Combining Agents And Components. Richard Krutisch, Philipp Meier, and Martin Wirsing (LMU München, Germany)

From Simulated to Real Environments: How to use SeSAm for software development. Franziska Klügl, Rainer Herrler and Christoph Oechslein (U Würzburg, Germany)

12:00 - 13:30 Lunch

14:30 - 16:00 Session 2: Systems and Applications (1)

SimMarket: Multiagent-based Customer Simulation and Decision Support for Category Management. Arndt Schwaiger and Björn Stahmer (DFKI Saarbrücken, Germany)

Multi-Agent Approach to the Design of an E-Medicine System. Jiang Tian and Huaglory Tianfield (Glasgow Caledonian University, UK)

A Holonic Multiagent System for Robust, Flexible and Reliable Medical Diagnosis. Mihalea Ulieru und Rainer Unland (U Calgary and U Essen, Canada/Germany)

16:00 - 16:30 Coffee break

16:30 - 18:00 Session 3: Systems and Applications (2)

On Programming Information Agent Systems - An Integrated Hotel Reservation Service as Case Study. Yun Ding, Heiner Litz, Rainer Malaka, and Dennis Pfisterer (European Media Lab Heidelberg, Germany)

Implementing Heterogeneous Agents in Dynamic Environments: A Case Study in RoboCupRescue. Jafar Habibi, Mazda Ahmadi, Ali Nouri, Mayssam Sayyadian, and Mayssam M. Nevisi (SUT Teheran, Iran).

Applying Agents for Engineering of Industrial Automation Systems. Thomas Wagner (U Stuttgart, Germany)


September 24, 2003 (Wednesday)

10:30 - 12:00 Session 4: Models and Architectures

Model for Simultaneous Actions in Situated Multi-agent Systems. Danny Weyns and Tom Holvoet  (KU Leuven)

Handling Sequences of Belief Change in a Multi-Agent Context. Laurent Perrussel (U Toulouse)

From the Specification of Multiagent Systems by Statecharts to their Formal Analysis by Model Checking: Towards Safety-Critical Applications. Frieder Stolzenburg and Toshiaki Arai (HS Harz and Mitsubishi Funaishikawa)

12:00 - 13:30 Lunch

14:30 - 16:00 Session 5: Collaboration and Negotiation

Multiagent Matching Algorithms With and Without Coach. Frieder Stolzenburg, Jan Murray, and Karsten Sturm (HS Harz and U Koblenz-Landau, Germany)

Improving evolutionary learning of cooperative behavior by including accountability of strategy components. Jörg Denzinger and Sean Ennis (U Calgary, Canada)

The C-IPS Agent Architecture for Modeling Negotiating Social Agents. Diemo Urbig, Dagmar Monett Diaz, and Kay Schröter (HU Berlin, Germany)

16:00 - 16:30 Coffee break

16:30 – 17:30 Session 6: Inter-Agent Communication and Performance

Platform-Independent Mechanism for Mobile Agents Communication Using Publish-Subscribe Event Based Systems. Amir Padovitz, Seng Loke, and Arkady Zaslavsky  (Monash University, USA)

Indicators for Self-Diagnosis: Communication-based Performance Measures. Michael Rovatsos, Michael Schillo, Klaus Fischer, and Gerhard Weiss (TU München and DFKI Saarbrücken, Germany)

17:30  - 18:30 Meeting of the German Special Interest Group on Distributed Artificial Intelligence


September 25, 2003 (Thursday)

10:30 - 12:30 Session 7: Semantic Web and Agents: Technologies and Applications

10:30 - 11:30 Invited Talk I: The Semantic Web: Methods, Tools, and Applications. Rudi Studer (U Karlsruhe, Germany)

An Ontology for Production Control of Semiconductor Manufacturing. Lars Mönch and Marcel Stehli  (TU Ilmenau, Germany)

Ontology-based Capability Management for Distributed Problem Solving in the Manufacturing Domain. Ingo Timm and Peer-Oliver Woelk (TU Ilmenau and U Hannover, Germany)

12:30 - 14:30 Lunch

14:30 - 16:00 Invited Talk II: Agent UML: What is it, and why do I care? James J. Odell (James Odell Associates, USA)