Estimating Information Value in Collaborative Multi-Agent Planning Systems

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Estimating Information Value in Collaborative Multi-Agent Planning Systems

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Title: Estimating Information Value in Collaborative Multi-Agent Planning Systems
Author: Grosz, Barbara; Sarne, David

Note: Order does not necessarily reflect citation order of authors.

Citation: David Sarne and Barbara Grosz. 2007. Estimating information value in collaborative multi-agent planning systems. In Proceedings of Autonomous Agents and Multi-Agent Systems (AAMAS-2007), May 14-18, 2007, Honolulu, Hawaii, ed. ACM International Conference on Autonomous Agents, Edmund Durfee, and Makoto Yokoo, 227-234. New York, N.Y.: ACM Press.
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Abstract: This paper addresses the problem of identifying the value of information held by a teammate on a distributed, multi-agent team. It focuses on a distributed scheduling task in which computer agents support people who are carrying out complex tasks in a dynamic environment. The paper presents a decision-theoretic algorithm for determining the value of information that is potentially relevant to schedule revisions, but is directly available only to the person and not the computer agent. The design of a "coordination autonomy" (CA) module within a coordination-manager system provided the empirical setting for this work. By design, the CA module depends on an external scheduler module to determine the specific effect of additional information on overall system performance. The paper describes two methods for reducing the number of queries the CA issues to the scheduler, enabling it to satisfy computational resource constraints placed on it. Experimental results indicate the algorithm improves system performance and establish the exceptional efficiency---measured in terms of the number of queries required for estimating the value of information---that can be achieved by the query-reducing methods.
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