Deciding When to Commit to Action During Observation-Based Coordination

Marcus J. Huber and Edmund H. Durfee

We have developed a multiagent scheme which utilizes plan recognition as its primary means of acquiring the information necessary to coordinate the activities of agents. Preliminary research has demonstrated that the plan recognition system developed makes coordination of multiple agents possible. An important issue that arises when observation is the primary means of information acquisition is the introduction of uncertainty into the coordination process. We have explored the issue of early versus late commitment to the uncertain information thus gained and the resulting tradeoff between time and effort as the commitment level is changed. Our results show that while in some situations it is worthwhile delaying commitment until uncertainty is reduced, in other situations it is important to act even when uncertainty is high. The long-term goal of the research is to develop the notion of coordination through observation, where agents utilize plan recognition to acquire coordination information.

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