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The Communication Plan Specifying agent-agent transactions Transaction patterns
Role of Communication Model
specifies knowledge/information transfer procedures top-level control over task execution
multiple knowledge-intensive tasks explanation facilities
additional communication tasks
example: basic system-user interaction
Relation to other models
task selected in feasibility study and further detailed in Task and Agent Models
requirements specification for interaction functions
organiz ation model task model agent model
requirements specification for reasoning functions
Input for communication modeling Task Model list of leaf tasks carried out by the considered agents transfer functions description of relevant agents: capabilities. responsibilities constraints. Knowledge Model Agent Model Communication Model 4 .
IS are becoming information + communication systems: distributed applications (telematics) virtual organizations CSCW intelligent multi-agent systems workflow management concurrent engineering business chain management and integration Communication Model 5 .Information systems: communication More and more.
Communication between actors Information modeling must cover: – Organizational/Business analysis – Task/Workplace analysis – Actor/Agent analysis (both human and system) Usually. so – Communication model intends to capture agent interactions within a joint task Communication Model = conceptual specification of: what kind of information objects are exchanged between agents in cooperating in and carrying out a task. and how? Communication Model 6 . several actors cooperate in a business process or task.
..... Focuses on modeling the dialogue between agents Communication Plan part-of dialogue diagram transaction control Transaction identifier/name I/O info objects agents involved communication plan constraints info exchange spec part-of Information Exchange Specification communication type message content message control info form/medium Structured. Knowledge Model Communication Model 7 . semiformal approach involved-in Task structure transfer functions .....Communication model: overview Task Model Task I/O info objects . involved-in involved-in Agent Model Agent capabilities ....
which governs the full dialogue between two agents 2. The individual transactions that link two (leaf) tasks carried out by two different agents 3. The overall communication plan. The information exchange specification that details the internal message structure of a transaction Start to construct the global overview. and fill in the details later Communication Model 8 .Communication Model: overview Layered approach to Communication Modeling Three levels: 1.
Sample application Energy market dynamic pricing of energy enables companies to do load management HOMEBOTS: intelligent electrical agents requires two-way communication system kWh kWh utility utility customer customer utility utility & info customer customer Communication Model 9 .
Transaction key component of Communication Model describes what information objects are exchanged indicates agents and tasks involved go-between of two tasks carried out by different agents building blocks for the full dialogue between two agents transactions have an internal structure example: obtain Communication Model 10 .
Other CM concepts Communication plan governs the full dialogue between the agents organization of transactions details transaction structure consists of messages only necessary for complex communications Information exchange specification Communication Model 11 .
Communication Plan easiest to begin with the overall communication plan describes full top-level dialogue typical transactions data input asking or answering questions presentation of reasoning results explanation of results Communication Model 12 .
Communication plan activities for each agent: list all tasks for each task: identify set of associated agent-agent transactions results combined in “dialogue diagram" DD depicts transactions between two agents draw a DD for each combination of two agents that exchange a reasonable amount of information specify control over the transactions Communication Model 13 .
2 Note: agent's (leaf) tasks are key entry to dialogue diagram construction Task A1 Task A3 Transaction Tr.g.Dialogue Diagram: general structure Agent A (e.g. user) Dialogue Agent B (e. system) Task B1 Transaction Tr. 3 Task A4 Task B3 Transaction Tr. 4 Task A5 Task B4 Communication Model 14 . 1 Task B2 Task A2 Transaction Tr.
'make decisions'. and 'cooperate' with one another.e. – Smart equipment agents we call homebots (inspired by Star Trek and Asimow's Robot Stories) We use this..g. devices can 'talk to'.New Customer Services: ICT Technology Through networked microprocessors. 'negotiate'. for distributed power load management (Further info: see separate case) Benefits: – handles much larger scale – higher degree of automation & decentralized flexible approach – proactive for the customer Communication Model 15 .
DD for energy market Utility Customer Task and transaction links in power auction are graphically sketched in the dialogue diagram: Gives overview of the system's communication plan Communication Model Announce Express Preferences Assess Award Schedule C O M M U N I C A T E Bid Implement Monitor Monitor 16 .
CP for the housing application assessment finished/ report decision application received/ order assessment application assessment data needed/ask data received / reply waiting for case data Communication Model 17 .
Transactions in the Homebots System Transaction list: – 1. Kick-off the auction: sends a trigger signal to the customer agents to commence a load management action – 2. Submit the bids: transmits the bids from the customer agents to the auctioneer for further processing – 3. Receive the resulting real-time implementation data: transmits the actual metering data (Needed for billing and for assessing the need for further load management actions) Communication Model 18 . Present the awarded power allocation: informs the customer agents about the results of the auction – 4. Present the associated real-time schedule: provides the customer agents with the calculated schedule that implements the awarded allocation – 5.
Transaction control notations state diagrams pseudo-code with special control primitives SEND. | (choice). RECEIVE CARRY-OUT (SEND/RECEIVE combination) WAIT-until/while PROCESS (task) . V (OR) Communication Model 19 . (sequence) REPEAT-until/while. IF THEN ELSE & (AND).
Homebots Dialogue Control Reduction need? Announce & Kick-off Auction Running Next Round Interested? N Opt out Interested? Y Convergence? N Express Prefs. Auction Completed/ Awards Distributed Award & Present Convergence? Y Opted Out Preferences Calculated Allocation Computed Assess Bids received? Power need? Bid & Submit Bid Submitted Communication Model 20 .
structured in a number of components: agents involved communication plan TRANSACTION Simple worksheet techniques are helpful here constraints information exchange specification information objects Communication Model 21 .Communication Model: Middle Level identifier & name Specification of individual transactions.
(2) market convergence postcondition – Information Exchange Spec: See Worksheet CM-2 Note: this transaction contains more than one message. (2) auctioneer/utility agent – Communication plan: Homebots (base version) – Constraints: (1) decision procedure for bidding completeness.Illustration Middle Level: Homebots System (II) Submit-the-bid transaction description (Worksheet CM-1) – Identifier/Name: Transaction 2: Submit-the-bid – Information objects: linking Bid and Assess tasks: (1) bid. (2) going price or going allocation (depending on domain theory) – Agents involved: (1) customer agents. and so is composite Communication Model 22 .
Transaction “Housing” (1) Transaction name Information object Agents involved Comm. Prototyping: interact with user ransaction is of the “order” type Communication Model 23 . Plan Constraints Informtation exchange Order application assessment a residence application data entry + knowledge system (+ assigner) active when application arrives.
Communication Model 24 .Transaction “Housing” (2) Transaction name Information object Agents involved Comm. Plan Constraints Informtation exchange Obtain application data Attribute-value pairs of an a applicant and residence database + knowledge system transitions connected to the “waiting for data” state Ensure mapping of data request onto DB data format transaction is of the ask-reply type.
but also an intended relationship between two agents. Both these aspects must be explicitly specified. I'm getting cold!" Communication Model 25 . – Compare: "Hey. so could you please shut the door?'' – First part is just information: notification message – Second part is request for action by the other agent: task delegation message So. idiot. shut the door. within one transaction: two messages differring in both content and intent Transactions not only transmit content.Composite Transactions "I'm getting cold.
Speech Acts Agent communication languages often inspired by so-called speech act theory Makes distinctions between: Content ('locutionary nature') of a speech act or message -what is actually being said -Intended effect ('illocutionary force') on the other agent Actual effect ('perlocutionary force') on the other agent – N. stupid!'' Edward Albee's Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? Communication Model 26 . nice communication modeling exercises: "It's the economy.B.
performatives in KQML (DARPA Knowledge Sharing Effort) and esp. Reject-td – Task Adoption: Propose. Inform Predefined types: Note: Intention = purpose x commitment – Cf. Reply. Reject-ta – Pure Information Exchange: Ask. COSY (Daimler-Benz) Communication Model 27 . Order. Intention (illocution): by means of typing a message – Task Delegation: Request.Communication Model: Detail Level Detailed message specification: 1. Offer. Require. Agree. Report. Content (locution): by means of a propositional statement 2.
Communication types Task delegation Task adoption Information exchange Request Require Order Reject-td Propose Offer Agree Reject-ta Ask Reply Report Inform Communication Model 28 .
and intends to prompt the receiving agent for its commitment. with the intention to let the other agent know the status of achievement (e. but not yet a commitment'. but agent wishes to negotiate on the terms. outcome of the action). success. failure. Ask/Reply: have as intent a query for information from another agent. and thus will act accordingly.Semantics of Communication Types Request/Propose: potential for cooperation. Inform: refers to a message type that just delivers information objects to another agent. Require/Offer: agent already has made a pre-commitment. Reject-td/ta: denote that the agent does not want to commit or cooperate. Indicates an independent informative action: no previous request or agreement involved. Report: types a message sent after an agent has acted towards a (previously) agreed task goal. This type thus denotes a conditional commitment.g. Communication Model 29 . Loosely: `I have an interest. and delivery of information in return. Order/Agree: agent has made a commitment.
COSY): Communication type patterns Communication Patterns INFORM ORDER REQUIRE REQUEST 1) REPORT 3) AGREE 5) REJECT-ta PROPOSE OFFER 7) REJECT-ta ASK AGREE OFFER PROPOSE REPLY REPORT ORDER REJECT-td REQUEST REQUIRE 8) REJECT-td 2) 4) 6) Communication Model 30 .Typed Message Patterns Not only typing of single messages possible. Also. natural chains of message types can be formed (cf.
Worksheet CM-2: Information Exchange Specification Only needed for complex communication patterns energy market Transaction Identifier/Name Agents involved: sender. receiver Information items Message specification Message control Worksheet structure Communication Model 31 .
Transaction “submit-the-bid”: message specifications Bid-message Auction-data-message type:PROPOSE content: bid from: customer agent to: auctioneer type: INFORM content: market data from: auctioneer to: customer agent type: REQUEST content: trigger next round from: auctioneer to: customer agent Opt-out-message Next-round-message type: REJECT-TA content: no part from: customer agent to: auctioneer Communication Model 32 .
mineral photographs – reasoning traces – WHY/HOW explanations syntactic form: data string. human intervention. diagram... Design issues Communication Model 33 . … cf. medium: pop-up window. .Information items role: core object support item – explanation texts of domain material rock photographs. command-line interface.
Control over messages Refinement of control in communication plan Notations: the same State diagram Pseudo code Communication Model 34 .
g.]) END-IF SEND(AUCTION-DATA-MESSAGE) & SEND(NEXT-ROUND-MESSAGE) END-REPEAT Communication Model 35 . SEND(BID-MESSAGE) ELSE SEND(OPT-OUT-MESSAGE) END-IF IF <bids received> THEN PROCESS(assess-task) ELSE PROCESS(decision subprocedure [e.Transaction: submit-the-bid REPEAT WHILE <market convergence condition not satisfied> IF <interest in load management> THEN PROCESS(bid-task).. WAIT..
Validation techniques Communication-plan walk-through adequacy transaction structure completeness list of information items need for help or explanation experimental technique to validate interaction mock-up software Wizard-of-Oz technique Communication Model 36 .
.Nielsen's guidelines for usability engineering Present a simple and natural dialogue Speak the user's language Minimize the user's memory load Maintain consistency in terminology Give feedback about what is going on Show clearly marked exits from unwanted states Offer shortcuts for the experienced user …. Communication Model 37 .
Guidelines for balancing the communication model Key inputs: leaf tasks TM transfer function KM Take agent capabilities into account (see AM) syntactic form of media is area of both CM and DM guideline: in CM if conceptual reason not in design model Decide here about support information Communication Model 38 .
Communication model activities Identify core information objects to be exchanged between agents Identify associated transactions Draw important dialogue diagrams Combine this to a full communication plan Specify the individual transactions worksheets CM-1 and CM-2 Validate and balance the model Communication Model 39 .