Hybrid Coordination Models for Handling Information Exchange among Internet Agents

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Andrea Bonarini, Marco Colombetti, Pier Luca Lanzi (eds.)
Workshop “Agenti intelligenti e Internet: teorie, strumenti e applicazioni”, pages 1–4
September 2000

Information exchange in multi-agent systems raises a multiplicity of problems, which the Internet further emphasises —heterogeneity and dynamics of information among the main ones. Knowledge scientists and engineers have proposed several solutions (mediators, information brokers, ontologies) which, roughly speaking, mainly focus on information representation, retrieval and interpretation.

Meanwhile, software engineers and computer scientists have concentrated on the general aspects of inter-agent interaction, by defining models and languages for the coordination of multi-agent systems, which focus instead on the acts of producing, accessing and consuming information, rather than on information per se. In this paper, we first discuss the benefits and limitations of classical coordination approaches to the problem of inter-agent information exchange on the Internet. Then, we survey a new class of coordination models, the hybrid ones, and show how they may help in handling information exchange in the context of Internet-based multi-agent systems. In particular, we take into account Law-governed Linda and TuCSoN.