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An Integrated Structured Analysis Approach to Intelligent Agent Communication


Intelligent multi-agent systems offer promising approaches for knowledge-intensive distributed applications. Now that such systems are becoming applied on a wider industrial scale, there is a practical need for structured analysis and design methods, similarly as exist for more conventional information and knowledge systems. This is still lacking for intelligent agent software. In this paper, we describe how the process of agent communication specification can be carried out through a structured analysis approach. The structured analysis approach we propose is an integrated extension of the CommonKADS methodology, a widely used standard for knowledge analysis and systems development. Our approach is based on and illustrated by a large-scale multi-agent application for distributed energy load management in industries and households, called Homebots, which is discussed as an extensive industrial case study.

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Last edited June 10, 1998 by fredrik.ygge@enersearch.se.