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m Röhl and A M Uhrmacher (2005)

Controlled Experimentation with Agents - Models and Implementations

In: Post-Proc. of the 5th Workshop on Engineering, ed. by Gleizes, M.-P. and Omicini, A. and Zambonelli, F, Springer.

The deployment of multi-agent systems demands for justified confidence into their functioning, both with respect to correctness of behaviour and with respect to timeliness thereof. Depending on the stage of the development process different mechanisms and abstractions are needed to facilitate the evaluation of interacting agents. We propose a modelling and simulation framework based on a discrete-event formalism for supporting the development process of multi-agent systems; from specification to implementation. The framework allows for the incremental refinement of agents and experimental set-ups while providing rigorous observation facilities. The benefit of using discrete-event modelling and simulation techniques for evaluating agents is illustrated using a simple example based on the Contract Net Protocol.

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