When executing the task, rather than choosing one specific goal position based only on the initial knowledge about the task context, the robot instantiates an ARPlace, and bases its decisions on this ARPlace, which is updated as new information about the task becomes available. To show the advantages of this least-commitment approach, we present a transformational planner that reasons about ARPlaces in order to optimize symbolic plans. Our empirical evaluation demonstrates that using ARPlaces leads to more robust and efficient mobile manipulation in the face of state estimation uncertainty on our simulated robot.]]>

As we may expect, solving I-DIDs is computationally hard. This is predominantly due to the large space of candidate models ascribed to the other agents and its exponential growth over time. We present two methods for reducing the size of the model space and stemming its exponential growth. Both these methods involve aggregating individual models into equivalence classes. Our first method groups together behaviorally equivalent models and selects only those models for updating which will result in predictive behaviors that are distinct from others in the updated model space. The second method further compacts the model space by focusing on portions of the behavioral predictions. Specifically, we cluster actionally equivalent models that prescribe identical actions at a single time step. Exactly identifying the equivalences would require us to solve all models in the initial set. We avoid this by selectively solving some of the models, thereby introducing an approximation. We discuss the error introduced by the approximation, and empirically demonstrate the improved efficiency in solving I-DIDs due to the equivalences.]]>

The literature suggests some global cost functions can be represented as flow networks, and the minimum cost flow algorithm can be used to compute the minimum costs of such networks in polynomial time. We show that naive adoption of this flow-based algorithmic method for global cost functions can result in a stronger form of null-inverse consistency. We further show how the method can be modified to handle cost projections and extensions to maintain generalized versions of AC* and FDAC* for cost functions with more than two variables. Similar generalization for the stronger EDAC* is less straightforward. We reveal the oscillation problem when enforcing EDAC* on cost functions sharing more than one variable. To avoid oscillation, we propose a weak version of EDAC* and generalize it to weak EDGAC* for non-binary cost functions. Using various benchmarks involving the soft variants of hard global constraints ALLDIFFERENT, GCC, SAME, and REGULAR, empirical results demonstrate that our proposal gives improvements of up to an order of magnitude when compared with the traditional constraint optimization approach, both in terms of time and pruning. ]]>

In this paper, we present a novel logic-based framework that allows one to check whether a reasoner is complete for a given query Q and ontology T---that is, whether the reasoner is guaranteed to compute all answers to Q w.r.t. T and an arbitrary data set A. Since ontologies and typical queries are often fixed at application design time, our approach allows application developers to check whether a reasoner known to be incomplete in general is actually complete for the kinds of input relevant for the application.

We also present a technique that, given a query Q, an ontology T, and reasoners R_1 and R_2 that satisfy certain assumptions, can be used to determine whether, for each data set A, reasoner R_1 computes more answers to Q w.r.t. T and A than reasoner R_2. This allows application developers to select the reasoner that provides the highest degree of completeness for Q and T that is compatible with the application's scalability requirements.

Our results thus provide a theoretical and practical foundation for the design of future ontology-based information systems that maximise scalability while minimising or even eliminating incompleteness of query answers.]]>

Our new technique exploits the intuitive strategy of selectively ignoring various dimensions in different parts of the state space. The resulting non-uniformity has strong implications, since the approximation is no longer Markovian, requiring the use of a modified planner. We also use a spatial and temporal proximity measure, which responds to continued planning as well as movement of the agent through the state space, to dynamically adapt the abstraction as planning progresses.

We present qualitative and quantitative results across a range of experimental domains showing that an agent exploiting this novel approximation method successfully finds solutions to the planning problem using much less than the full state space. We assess and analyse the features of domains which our method can exploit. ]]>

In this article we propose a distributed, market-inspired, mechanism for the management of a future urban road network, where intelligent autonomous vehicles, operated by software agents on behalf of their human owners, interact with the infrastructure in order to travel safely and efficiently through the road network. Building on the reservation-based intersection control model proposed by Dresner and Stone, we consider two different scenarios: one with a single intersection and one with a network of intersections. In the former, we analyse the performance of a novel policy based on combinatorial auctions for the allocation of reservations. In the latter, we analyse the impact that a traffic assignment strategy inspired by competitive markets has on the drivers' route choices. Finally we propose an adaptive management mechanism that integrates the auction-based traffic control policy with the competitive traffic assignment strategy.]]>