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Designing Self-Organising Environments with Agents and Artefacts: A Simulation-Driven Approach

Luca Gardelli, Mirko Viroli, Matteo Casadei, Andrea Omicini
We propose a methodological approach for tackling the early design stages of self-organising Multiagent Systems (MASs). We adopt an architectural pattern based on the Agents and Artefacts (A&A) metamodel: self-organisation mechanisms are added to an existing environment of artefacts by embedding them into environmental agents. We rely on a three-stage design approach with modelling, simulation and tuning, so as to identify a suitable design of environmental agents and their interaction with artefacts. The main objective is to design a MAS environment providing services that self-organise in response to the unpredictable dynamics of the agents exploiting them.

As a case study, we analyse the problem called collective sorting, a service for decentralised sorting of items in MAS environments that was inspired by social insects' behaviour: the proposed solution features environmental agents and tuple spaces, whose design choices and evaluation have been driven by formal simulations.
Keywords: collective sorting; self-organisation; emergence; methodology; simulation; tuning; pattern; enrivonment; Multiagent System; MAS; artefact
International Journal of Agent-Oriented Software Engineering 2(2), pages 171-195, 2008.
Massimo Cossentino, Giancarlo Fortino, Wilma Russo (eds.), Inderscience Publishers
Special Issue on Multi-Agent Systems and Simulation
@article{selforg-ijaose2,
	Author = {Gardelli, Luca and Viroli, Mirko and Casadei, Matteo and Omicini, Andrea},
	Doi = {10.1504/IJAOSE.2008.017314},
	Editor = {Cossentino, Massimo and Fortino, Giancarlo and Russo, Wilma},
	Issn = {1746-1375},
	Issn-Online = {1746-1383},
	Journal = {International Journal of Agent-Oriented Software Engineering},
	Keywords = {collective sorting; self-organisation; emergence; simulation; tuning; patterns; multi-agent systems; MAS design; artefacts; agent-based systems; metamodelling; environmental agents; tuple spaces; social insects},
	Note = {Special Issue on Multi-Agent Systems and Simulation},
	Number = 2,
	Pages = {171--195},
	Publisher = {Inderscience Publishers},
	ScopusId = {2-s2.0-77954568138},
	Title = {Designing Self-Organising Environments with Agents and Artefacts: A Simulation-Driven Approach},
	Url = {http://www.inderscience.com/info/inarticle.php?artid=17314},
	Url-Pdf = {http://inderscience.metapress.com/content/t062gp2g6j688pvl/fulltext.pdf},
	Volume = 2,
	Year = 2008}