Theoretical and Empirical Aspects of a Planner in a Multi-agent Environment

TitleTheoretical and Empirical Aspects of a Planner in a Multi-agent Environment
Publication TypeBook Chapters
Year of Publication2002
AuthorsDix J, Munoz-Avila H, Nau DS, Zhang L
EditorFlesca S, Greco S, Ianni G, Leone N
Book TitleLogics in Artificial Intelligence
Series TitleLecture Notes in Computer Science
Pagination173 - 185
PublisherSpringer Berlin / Heidelberg
ISBN Number978-3-540-44190-8
KeywordsComputer science

We give the theoretical foundations and empirical evaluation of a planning agent, ashop, performing HTN planning in a multi-agent environment. ashop is based on ASHOP , an agentised version of the original SHOP HTN planning algorithm, and is integrated in the IMPACT multi-agent environment. We ran several experiments involving accessing various distributed, heterogeneous information sources, based on simplified versions of noncombatant evacuation operations, NEO’s. As a result, we noticed that in such realistic settings the time spent on communication (including network time) is orders of magnitude higher than the actual inference process. This has important consequences for optimisations of such planners. Our main results are: (1) using NEO’s as new, more realistic benchmarks for planners acting in an agent environment, and (2) a memoization mechanism implemented on top of shop, which improves the overall performance considerably.