Recent Research Activities & Projects

Agreement Technologies COST Action IC0801

Agreement Technologies refer to computer systems in which autonomous software agents negotiate with one another, typically on behalf of humans, in order to come to mutually acceptable agreements. This Action aims at coordinating national efforts on a new paradigm for next generation distributed systems, based on the concept of agreement between computational agents. An entity may choose whether to fulfill an agreement or not, and it should fulfill it when there is an obligation to do so derived from the standing agreements. Autonomy, interaction, mobility and openness are the characteristics that the paradigm will cover from a theoretical and practical perspective. Semantic alignment, negotiation, argumentation, virtual organisations, learning, real time, and several other technologies will be in the sandbox to define, specify and verify such systems. Both functional and non-functional properties are to be studied. Security on execution will be based on trust and reputation measures. These measures will help agents to determine with whom to interact and what terms and conditions to accept.
Keywords: Agreement, Multiagent Systems, Semantics

Domain : Information and Communication Technologies
Action title : Agreement Technologies

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Automatic Multiple-Choice Questions construction using domain ontologies

Student: Mr. K. Kanaris
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e-University for Administrative Affairs Consultancy to Information Society SA

e-University aims at developing systems to support all of the activities of Greek Universities and Technological Institutes (GU&TI). The major objective is to provide citizens interacting with GU&TI the electronic services needed for information provision and transactions support. The project aims to the development of pilot systems that are going to be deployed in selected GU&TI.

This project is part of the overall e-University project, aiming to the development of a pilot system that will support information provision and e-transactions for the citizens interacting with GU&TIs on administrative affairs. We specify the requirements for such a system and supervise its development. The pilot system will be tested in the premises of the University of the Aegean and in the premises of the Technological Institute of Athens.

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Grid4All aims to enable domestic users, non-profit organisations such as schools, and small enterprises, to share their resources and to access massive Grid resources when needed, envisioning a future in which access to resources is democratised, readily available, cooperative, and inexpensive. Grid4All goals entail a system pooling large amounts of cheap resources (connecting to commercial cluster providers when needed); a dynamic system satisfying spikes of demand; using self management techniques to scale and adapt to changes in environment; supporting isolated, secure, dynamic, geographically distributed user groups and using secure peer-to-peer techniques to federate large numbers of small-scale resources into large-scale Grids.

The technical issues addressed are aspects of security, support for multiple administrative and management authorities, self-management by combining the strong points of structured overlay P2P networks and that of component models, on-demand resource allocation, heterogeneity, and fault tolerance.

The proof of concept applications include: e-learning tools for collaborative editing in schools and a digital content processing service accessible by end residential users.

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The aim of the project is the design and implementation of a human-centered and collaborative workbench for the engineering of ontologies. The workbench aims to support the HCOME methodology for ontology engineering developed by members of the AI-Lab. In addition to the implementation of the proposed tool, we intend to further develop and conduct research on subjects such as the support and integration of new semantic web standards, the integration of an ontology library, ontology versioning and discussion facilities, and effective ontology mapping/merging techniques.

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ICAGENT: Towards a Generic Framework for the development of Intelligent Collaborative Agents

Several agent frameworks have been proposed for developing intelligent software agents and multi-agent systems that are able to perform in dynamic environments. These frameworks and architectures exploit specific reasoning tasks (such as option selection, desire filtering, plan elaboration and means-end reasoning) that support agents to react, deliberate and/or interact/cooperate with other agents. Such reasoning tasks are realized by means of specific modules that agents may trigger according to circumstances, switching their behaviour between predefined discrete behavioural modes. Developments in the context of this project aim to provide facilities so as the non-layered BDI-architecture of ICagent to support performance in dynamic and unpredictable multi-agent environments through efficient balancing between behavioural modes in a continuous space. This space is circumscribed by the purely (individual) reactive, the purely (individual) deliberative and the social deliberative behavioural modes. ICagent relates agent’s flexible behaviour to cognition and sociability, supporting the management of plans constructed by the agent’s mental and domain actions in a coordinated manner.

This is a continuation of the work done by Vangelis Kourakos-Mavromichalis: Via this project we aim to the full implementation, validation and empirical testing of a generic framework for building collaborative agents.
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Ontology Management and Exploitation for text summarization (Nationally funded (international) project, 2005 - 2008)
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OntoSum: Ontology Management and Exploitation for text summarization

The OntoSum project aims at developing new methods and techniques for - Ontology Learning - Ontology Coordination, Mapping and Ontology merging - Ontology-based Summarization. TheOntoSum methodology consists of the following steps - Specification of the theoretical framework - Development of methods and of a prototype system - Specification of the evaluation methodology - Exploitation and evaluation of the developed methods and system in two case studies: (a) in the context of the e-Centric EXODUS platform for document management, and (b) in biomedical applications that are being developed in DEVLAB of Dartmouth College. - Dissemination of results

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Pythagoras: Dynamic Formation of Collaborative Agent Organizations

Agent Organizations are complex entities composed of several agents that collaborate to achieve certain tasks. The Pythagoras project aims at developing new efficient methods for the formation and the collaborative operation of dynamic agent organizations. We propose to represent the formation process as a 3-step procedure consisting of the following steps: 1) creation of the organization's structure, 2) task/role allocation to the agents in the organization, 3) planning and acting by the agents. Since the agents that participate in an organization can be diverse, having different skills and resources, and also different personal goals, the processes of creating the organization's structure and allocating roles/tasks to agent can be heavily constrained and very complex. We intend to investigate distributed constraint-based reasoning techniques for the efficient implementation of these processes.

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Semantic Information System for the trading of resources and services

Student: Mr. K. Tzonas
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