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Issues in Automated Negotiation and Electronic Commerce: Extending the Contract Net Framework
, 1999
"... In this paper we discuss a number of previously unaddressed issues that arise in automated negotiation among selfinterested agents whose rationality is bounded by computational complexity. These issues are presented in the context of iterative task allocation negotiations. First, the reasons ..."
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Cited by 244 (24 self)
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In this paper we discuss a number of previously unaddressed issues that arise in automated negotiation among selfinterested agents whose rationality is bounded by computational complexity. These issues are presented in the context of iterative task allocation negotiations. First, the reasons why such agents need to be able to choose the stage and level of commitment dynamically are identified. A protocol that allows such choices through conditional commitment breaking penalties is presented. Next, the implications of bounded rationality are analyzed. Several tradeoffs between allocated computation and negotiation benefits and risk are enumerated, and the necessity of explicit local deliberation control is substantiated. Techniques for linking negotiation items and multiagent contracts are presented as methods for escaping local optima in the task allocation process. Implementing both methods among selfinterested bounded rational agents is discussed. Finally, the ...
Coalitions Among Computationally Bounded Agents
 Artificial Intelligence
, 1997
"... This paper analyzes coalitions among selfinterested agents that need to solve combinatorial optimization problems to operate e ciently in the world. By colluding (coordinating their actions by solving a joint optimization problem) the agents can sometimes save costs compared to operating individua ..."
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Cited by 202 (26 self)
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This paper analyzes coalitions among selfinterested agents that need to solve combinatorial optimization problems to operate e ciently in the world. By colluding (coordinating their actions by solving a joint optimization problem) the agents can sometimes save costs compared to operating individually. A model of bounded rationality is adopted where computation resources are costly. It is not worthwhile solving the problems optimally: solution quality is decisiontheoretically traded o against computation cost. A normative, application and protocolindependent theory of coalitions among boundedrational agents is devised. The optimal coalition structure and its stability are signi cantly a ected by the agents ' algorithms ' performance pro les and the cost of computation. This relationship is rst analyzed theoretically. Then a domain classi cation including rational and boundedrational agents is introduced. Experimental results are presented in vehicle routing with real data from ve dispatch centers. This problem is NPcomplete and the instances are so large thatwith current technologyany agent's rationality is bounded by computational complexity. 1
Using Anytime Algorithms in Intelligent Systems
, 1996
"... Anytime algorithms give intelligent systems the capability to trade deliberation time for quality of results. This capability is essential for successful operation in domains such as signal interpretation, realtime diagnosis and repair, and mobile robot control. What characterizes these domains i ..."
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Cited by 192 (8 self)
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Anytime algorithms give intelligent systems the capability to trade deliberation time for quality of results. This capability is essential for successful operation in domains such as signal interpretation, realtime diagnosis and repair, and mobile robot control. What characterizes these domains is that it is not feasible (computationally) or desirable (economically) to compute the optimal answer. This article surveys the main control problems that arise when a system is composed of several anytime algorithms. These problems relate to optimal management of uncertainty and precision. After a brief introduction to anytime computation, I outline a wide range of existing solutions to the metalevel control problem and describe current work that is aimed at increasing the applicability of anytime computation.
Principles of Metareasoning
 Artificial Intelligence
, 1991
"... In this paper we outline a general approach to the study of metareasoning, not in the sense of explicating the semantics of explicitly specified metalevel control policies, but in the sense of providing a basis for selecting and justifying computational actions. This research contributes to a devel ..."
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Cited by 178 (10 self)
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In this paper we outline a general approach to the study of metareasoning, not in the sense of explicating the semantics of explicitly specified metalevel control policies, but in the sense of providing a basis for selecting and justifying computational actions. This research contributes to a developing attack on the problem of resourcebounded rationality, by providing a means for analysing and generating optimal computational strategies. Because reasoning about a computation without doing it necessarily involves uncertainty as to its outcome, probability and decision theory will be our main tools. We develop a general formula for the utility of computations, this utility being derived directly from the ability of computations to affect an agent's external actions. We address some philosophical difficulties that arise in specifying this formula, given our assumption of limited rationality. We also describe a methodology for applying the theory to particular problemsolving systems, a...
Playing large games using simple strategies
 IN: PROC. OF THE 4TH ACM CONF. ON EL. COMMERCE (EC ’03). ASSOC. OF COMP. MACH
, 2003
"... We prove the existence of Nash equilibrium strategies with support logarithmic in the number of pure strategies. We also show that the payoffs to all players in any (exact) Nash equilibrium can be approximated by the payoffs to the players in some such logarithmic support Nash equilibrium. These ..."
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Cited by 123 (4 self)
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We prove the existence of Nash equilibrium strategies with support logarithmic in the number of pure strategies. We also show that the payoffs to all players in any (exact) Nash equilibrium can be approximated by the payoffs to the players in some such logarithmic support Nash equilibrium. These strategies are also uniform on a multiset of logarithmic size and therefore this leads to a quasipolynomial algorithm for computing an Nash equilibrium. To our knowledge this is the rst subexponential algorithm for finding an Nash equilibrium. Our results hold for any multipleplayer game as long as the number of players is a constant (i.e., it is independent of the number of pure strategies). A similar argument also proves that for a xed number of players m, the payos to all players in any mtuple of mixed strategies can be approximated by the payos in some mtuple of constant support strategies. We also prove that if the payoff matrices of a two person game have low rank then the game has an exact Nash equilibrium with small support. This implies that if the payoff matrices can be well approximated by low rank matrices, the game has an equilibrium with small support. It also implies that if the payo matrices have constant rank we can compute an exact Nash equilibrium in polynomial time.
Negotiation Among Selfinterested Computationally Limited Agents
, 1996
"... A Dissertation Presented by TUOMAS W. SANDHOLM ..."
Environment Centered Analysis and Design of Coordination Mechanisms
, 1995
"... Coordination, as the act of managing interdependencies between activities, is one of the central research issues in Distributed Artificial Intelligence. Many researchers have shown that there is no single best organization or coordination mechanism for all environments. Problems in coordinating the ..."
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Cited by 103 (24 self)
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Coordination, as the act of managing interdependencies between activities, is one of the central research issues in Distributed Artificial Intelligence. Many researchers have shown that there is no single best organization or coordination mechanism for all environments. Problems in coordinating the activities of distributed intelligent agents appear in many domains: the control of distributed sensor networks; multiagent scheduling of people and/or machines; distributed diagnosis of errors in localarea or telephone networks; concurrent engineering; `software agents' for information gathering. The design of coordination mechanisms for group...
Provably BoundedOptimal Agents
 Journal of Artificial Intelligence Research
, 1995
"... Since its inception, artificial intelligence has relied upon a theoretical foundation centred around perfect rationality as the desired property of intelligent systems. We argue, as others have done, that this foundation is inadequate because it imposes fundamentally unsatisfiable requirements. As a ..."
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Cited by 95 (2 self)
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Since its inception, artificial intelligence has relied upon a theoretical foundation centred around perfect rationality as the desired property of intelligent systems. We argue, as others have done, that this foundation is inadequate because it imposes fundamentally unsatisfiable requirements. As a result, there has arisen a wide gap between theory and practice in AI, hindering progress in the field. We propose instead a property called bounded optimality. Roughly speaking, an agent is boundedoptimal if its program is a solution to the constrained optimization problem presented by its architecture and the task environment. We show how to construct agents with this property for a simple class of machine architectures in a broad class of realtime environments. We illustrate these results using a simple model of an automated mail sorting facility. We also define a weaker property, asymptotic bounded optimality (ABO), that generalizes the notion of optimality in classical complexity th...