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A Bayesian Network Approach to the Self-Organization and Learning in Intelligent Agents - 2000

A Bayesian Network Approach to the Self-Organization and Learning in Intelligent Agents - 2000

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A Bayesian Network Approach to the Self-organizationand Learning in Intelligent Agents
Ferat SahinDissertation submitted to the Faculty of Virginia Polytechnic and StateUniversity in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of PhilosophyinElectrical and Computer EngineeringHugh F. VanLandingham, ChairJohn S. BayPushkin KachrooA. Lynn AbbottCharles J. ParryAugust 25, 2000Blacksburg, VirginiaKeywords: Bayesian networks, learning, intelligent agent, self-organizationCopyright 2000, Ferat Sahin
 
A Bayesian Network Approach to the Self-organization and Learningin Intelligent AgentsFerat Sahin(ABSTRACT)
A Bayesian network approach to self-organization and learning is introduced for usewith intelligent agents. Bayesian networks, with the help of influence diagrams, areemployed to create a decision-theoretic intelligent agent. Influence diagrams combineboth Bayesian networks and utility theory. In this research, an intelligent agent ismodeled by its
belief 
,
 preference
, and
capabilities
attributes. Each agent is assumed tohave its own belief about its environment. The belief aspect of the intelligent agent isaccomplished by a Bayesian network. The goal of an intelligent agent is said to be the
 preference
of the agent and is represented with a utility function in the decision theoreticintelligent agent. Capabilities are represented with a set of possible actions of thedecision-theoretic intelligent agent. Influence diagrams have utility nodes and decisionnodes to handle the preference and capabilities of the decision-theoretic intelligent agent,respectively.Learning is accomplished by Bayesian networks in the decision-theoretic intelligentagent. Bayesian network learning methods are discussed intensively in this paper.Because intelligent agents will explore and learn the environment, the learning algorithmshould be implemented online. None of the existent Bayesian network learningalgorithms has online learning. Thus, an
online
Bayesian network learning method isproposed to allow the intelligent agent learn during its exploration.
 
iiiSelf-organization of the intelligent agents is accomplished because each agent modelsother agents by observing their behavior. Agents have belief, not only aboutenvironment, but also about other agents. Therefore, an agent takes its decisionsaccording to the model of the environment and the model of the other agents. Eventhough each agent acts independently, they take the other agents behaviors into accountto make a decision. This permits the agents to organize themselves for a common task.To test the proposed intelligent agent's learning and self-organizing abilities,Windows application software is written to simulate multi-agent systems. The software,IntelliAgent, lets the user design decision-theoretic intelligent agents both manually andautomatically. The software can also be used for knowledge discovery by employingBayesian network learning a database.Additionally, we have explored a well-known herding problem to obtain sound resultsfor our intelligent agent design. In the problem, a dog tries to herd a sheep to a certainlocation, i.e. a pen. The sheep tries to avoid the dog by retreating from the dog. Theherding problem is simulated using the IntelliAgent software. Simulations provided goodresults in terms of the dog's learning ability and its ability to organize its actionsaccording to the sheep's (other agent) behavior.In summary, a decision-theoretic approach is applied to the self-organization andlearning problems in intelligent agents. Software was written to simulate the learning andself-organization abilities of the proposed agent design. A user manual for the softwareand the simulation results are presented.This research is supported by the Office of Naval Research with the grant numberN00014-98-1-0779. Their financial support is greatly appreciated.

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