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22
Constraint propagation algorithms for temporal reasoning
 Readings in Qualitative Reasoning about Physical Systems
, 1986
"... Abstract: This paper revises and expands upon a paper presented by two of the present authors at AAAI 1986 [Vilain & Kautz 1986]. As with the original, this revised document considers computational aspects of intervalbased and pointbased temporal representations. Computing the consequences of tempo ..."
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Cited by 371 (4 self)
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Abstract: This paper revises and expands upon a paper presented by two of the present authors at AAAI 1986 [Vilain & Kautz 1986]. As with the original, this revised document considers computational aspects of intervalbased and pointbased temporal representations. Computing the consequences of temporal assertions is shown to be computationally intractable in the intervalbased representation, but not in the pointbased one. However, a fragment of the interval language can be expressed using the point language and benefits from the tractability of the latter. The present paper departs from the original primarily in correcting claims made there about the point algebra, and in presenting some closely related results of van Beek [1989]. The representation of time has been a recurring concern of Artificial Intelligence researchers. Many representation schemes have been proposed for temporal reasoning; of these, one of the most attractive is James Allen's algebra of temporal intervals [Allen 1983]. This representation scheme is particularly appealing for its simplicity and for its ease of implementation with constraint propagation algorithms. Reasoners based on
Temporal Reasoning Based on SemiIntervals
, 1992
"... A generalization of Allen's intervalbased approach to temporal reasoning is presented. The notion of `conceptual neighborhood' of qualitative relations between events is central to the presented approach. Relations between semiintervals rather than intervals are used as the basic units of knowledg ..."
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Cited by 234 (14 self)
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A generalization of Allen's intervalbased approach to temporal reasoning is presented. The notion of `conceptual neighborhood' of qualitative relations between events is central to the presented approach. Relations between semiintervals rather than intervals are used as the basic units of knowledge. Semiintervals correspond to temporal beginnings or endings of events. We demonstrate the advantages of reasoning on the basis of semiintervals: 1) semiintervals are rather natural entities both from a cognitive and from a computational point of view; 2) coarse knowledge can be processed directly; computational effort is saved; 3) incomplete knowledge about events can be fully exploited; 4) incomplete inferences made on the basis of complete knowledge can be used directly for further inference steps; 5) there is no tradeoff in computational strength for the added flexibility and efficiency; 6) for a natural subset of Allen's algebra, global consistency can be guaranteed in polynomial time; 7) knowledge about relations between events can be represented much more compactly.
Reasoning about Temporal Relations: A Maximal Tractable Subclass of Allen's Interval Algebra
 Journal of the ACM
, 1995
"... We introduce a new subclass of Allen's interval algebra we call "ORDHorn subclass," which is a strict superset of the "pointisable subclass." We prove that reasoning in the ORDHorn subclass is a polynomialtime problem and show that the pathconsistency method is sufficient for deciding satisfiabil ..."
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Cited by 161 (9 self)
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We introduce a new subclass of Allen's interval algebra we call "ORDHorn subclass," which is a strict superset of the "pointisable subclass." We prove that reasoning in the ORDHorn subclass is a polynomialtime problem and show that the pathconsistency method is sufficient for deciding satisfiability. Further, using an extensive machinegenerated case analysis, we show that the ORDHorn subclass is a maximal tractable subclass of the full algebra (assuming<F NaN> P6=NP). In fact, it is the unique greatest tractable subclass amongst the subclasses that contain all basic relations. This work has been supported by the German Ministry for Research and Technology (BMFT) under grant ITW 8901 8 as part of the WIP project and under grant ITW 9201 as part of the TACOS project. 1 1 Introduction Temporal information is often conveyed qualitatively by specifying the relative positions of time intervals such as ". . . point to the figure while explaining the performance of the system . . . "...
Time and time again: The many ways to represent time
 International Journal of Intelligent Systems
, 1991
"... issues remain essentially the same. One of the most crucial problems in any computer system that involves representing the world is the representation of time. This includes applications such as databases, simulation, expert systems and applications of Artificial Intelligence in general. In this bri ..."
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Cited by 105 (0 self)
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issues remain essentially the same. One of the most crucial problems in any computer system that involves representing the world is the representation of time. This includes applications such as databases, simulation, expert systems and applications of Artificial Intelligence in general. In this brief paper, I will give a survey of the basic techniques available for representing time, and then talk about temporal reasoning in a general setting as needed in AI applications. Quite different representations of time are usable depending on the assumptions that can be made about the temporal information to be represented. The most crucial issue is the degree of certainty one can assume. Can one assume that a time stamp can be assigned to each event, or barring that, that the events are fully ordered? Or can we only assume that a partial ordering of events is known? Can events be simultaneous? Can they overlap in time and yet not be simultaneous? If they are not instantaneous, do we know the durations of events? Different answers to each of these questions allow very different representations of time. I. Representations Based on Dating Schemes A good representation of time for instantaneous events, if it is possible, is using an absolute dating system. This involves time stamping each event with an absolute realtime, say taken off the system clock
On Binary Constraint Problems
 Journal of the ACM
, 1994
"... The concepts of binary constraint satisfaction problems can be naturally generalized to the relation algebras of Tarski. The concept of pathconsistency plays a central role. Algorithms for pathconsistency can be implemented on matrices of relations and on matrices of elements from a relation algeb ..."
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Cited by 87 (2 self)
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The concepts of binary constraint satisfaction problems can be naturally generalized to the relation algebras of Tarski. The concept of pathconsistency plays a central role. Algorithms for pathconsistency can be implemented on matrices of relations and on matrices of elements from a relation algebra. We give an example of a 4by4 matrix of infinite relations on which no iterative local pathconsistency algorithm terminates. We give a class of examples over a fixed finite algebra on which all iterative local algorithms, whether parallel or sequential, must take quadratic time. Specific relation algebras arising from interval constraint problems are also studied: the Interval Algebra, the Point Algebra, and the Containment Algebra. 1 Introduction The logical study of binary relations is classical [8], [9], [51], [52], [56], [53], [54]. Following this tradition, Tarski formulated the theory of binary relations as an algebraic theory called relation algebra [59] 1 . Constraint satis...
A Survey on Temporal Reasoning in Artificial Intelligence
, 1994
"... The notion of time is ubiquitous in any activity that requires intelligence. In particular, several important notions like change, causality, action are described in terms of time. Therefore, the representation of time and reasoning about time is of crucial importance for many Artificial Intelligenc ..."
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Cited by 42 (4 self)
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The notion of time is ubiquitous in any activity that requires intelligence. In particular, several important notions like change, causality, action are described in terms of time. Therefore, the representation of time and reasoning about time is of crucial importance for many Artificial Intelligence systems. Specifically during the last 10 years, it has been attracting the attention of many AI researchers. In this survey, the results of this work are analysed. Firstly, Temporal Reasoning is defined. Then, the most important representational issues which determine a Temporal Reasoning approach are introduced: the logical form on which the approach is based, the ontology (the units taken as primitives, the temporal relations, the algorithms that have been developed,. . . ) and the concepts related with reasoning about action (the representation of change, causality, action,. . . ). For each issue the different choices in the literature are discussed. 1 Introduction The notion of time i...
On Binary Constraint Networks
, 1988
"... It is wellknown that general constraint satisfaction problems (CSPs) may be reduced to the binary case (BCSPs) [Pei92]. CSPs may be represented by binary constraint networks (BCNs), which can be represented by a graph with nodes for variables for which values are to be found in the domain of intere ..."
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Cited by 39 (5 self)
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It is wellknown that general constraint satisfaction problems (CSPs) may be reduced to the binary case (BCSPs) [Pei92]. CSPs may be represented by binary constraint networks (BCNs), which can be represented by a graph with nodes for variables for which values are to be found in the domain of interest, and edges labelled with binary relations between the values, which constrain the choice of solutions to those which satisfy the relations (e.g. [Mac77]). We formulate networks and algorithms in a general algebraic setting, that of Tarski's relation algebra [JonTar52], and obtain a parallel O(n log n) upper bound for pathconsistency, and give a class of examples on which reductiontype algorithms (which include the standard serial algorithms [Mac77, MacFre85, MohHen86] and all possible parallelisations of them) are O(n ). We then consider BCNs over various classes of relations that arise from an underlying linearly ordered set, the most wellknown being the interval algebra [All83, LadMad88.1]. There are three main consequences of the algebraic approach. Firstly, it puts the theory of BCNs on a firm (and classical) theoretical footing, enabling, for example, the complexity results. Secondly, we can apply techniques from relation algebra to show that consistency checking for a large class of relations on intervals ([All83]) is serial cubic, or parallel log time, significantly extending previous results (the problem is NPhard in general [VilKau86]). Thirdly, results are obtained via a new construction of relation algebras from other algebras which is of independent mathematical interest.
The Heterogeneous Tool Set
 of Lecture Notes in Computer Science
, 2007
"... Abstract. Heterogeneous specification becomes more and more important because complex systems are often specified using multiple viewpoints, involving multiple formalisms. Moreover, a formal software development process may lead to a change of formalism during the development. However, current resea ..."
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Cited by 30 (21 self)
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Abstract. Heterogeneous specification becomes more and more important because complex systems are often specified using multiple viewpoints, involving multiple formalisms. Moreover, a formal software development process may lead to a change of formalism during the development. However, current research in integrated formal methods only deals with adhoc integrations of different formalisms. The heterogeneous tool set (Hets) is a parsing, static analysis and proof management tool combining various such tools for individual specification languages, thus providing a tool for heterogeneous multilogic specification. Hets is based on a graph of logics and languages (formalized as socalled institutions), their tools, and their translations. This provides a clean semantics of heterogeneous specification, as well as a corresponding proof calculus. For proof management, the calculus of development graphs (known from other largescale proof management systems) has been adapted to heterogeneous specification. Development graphs provide an overview of the (heterogeneous) specification module hierarchy and the current proof state, and thus may be used for monitoring the overall correctness of a heterogeneous development. 1
The Logic of Time Representation
, 1987
"... This investigation concerns representations of time by means of intervals, stemming from work of Allen [All83] and van Benthem [vBen83]. Allen described an Interval Calculus of thirteen binary relations on convex intervals over a linear order (the real numbers). He gave a practical algorithm for che ..."
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Cited by 29 (1 self)
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This investigation concerns representations of time by means of intervals, stemming from work of Allen [All83] and van Benthem [vBen83]. Allen described an Interval Calculus of thirteen binary relations on convex intervals over a linear order (the real numbers). He gave a practical algorithm for checking the consistency of a subclass of Boolean constraints. First, we describe a completeness theorem for Allen's calculus, in its corresponding formulation as a firstorder theory LM . LM is countably categorical, and axiomatises the complete theory of intervals over a dense unbounded linear order. Its only countable model up to isomorphism is the nontrivial intervals over the rational numbers. Algorithms are given for quantiferelimination, consistency checking, and satisfaction of arbitrary firstorder formulas in the Interval Calculus. A natural countable model of the calculus is presented, the TUS , in which clock and calendartime may be represented in a straightforward way. Allen an...
A Model for Reasoning About Bidimensional Temporal Relations
, 1998
"... This paper introduces the rectangle algebra as the power set of the set of the pairs of atomic relations which can hold between two rational intervals. It goes on proving that the question of the consistency of a rectangle network which constraints are preconvex is decidable by means of the pa ..."
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Cited by 10 (0 self)
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This paper introduces the rectangle algebra as the power set of the set of the pairs of atomic relations which can hold between two rational intervals. It goes on proving that the question of the consistency of a rectangle network which constraints are preconvex is decidable by means of the pathconsistency method in time polynomial in the length of the network. 1 Introduction Temporal and spatial dependencies between data constitute the reason for existence of several problems in computer science : geographical information systems, natural language understanding, specification and verification of programs and systems, temporal and spatial databases, temporal and spatial planification, etc. Those who tackled these problems proposed numerous models for reasoning about time and space, the objects they considered as well as the relations between these objects distinguishing one of these models from the others. As an illustrative example, the model of the intervals proposed by Al...