context: "Although there are situations where an agent can operate usefully by itself, the increasing interconnection and networking is making such situations rare"(Huhns). The idea is then to use the metaphor of agents living and interacting in a society to solve distributed AI problems.


However, simply decomposing a problem into simpler modules, which is good engineering practice, cannot always be considered a multi-agent approach. Agents are not just modules. Also, keep in mind that communication in distributed systems is costly.

The nature and type of interaction between agents can depend on many different factors:

A MultiAgentSystems designer should therefore analyze the above factors in order to identify the type of situations that are either likely to emerge or desirable:

The designer will then provide adequate InteractionProtocols to deal with such situations.

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(last edited November 1, 2005)
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