Intelligent Web Agents
is a bit of code that has a goal and travels around the net in fulfillment
of that goal. It gathers information as it goes and reports back to its creator
on its progress. After it fulfills its goal it may stay around as in information
two (or more) such agents meet a "conversation" will ensue in which
each will try to communicate its needs and its services. If they can discover
a mutually beneficial relationship they will exchange information. Each must
have the possibility of gaining from the transaction, though in a given transaction
not all will benefit.
goal is to build a swarm of a billion or so such agents, each negotiating
with each other. This is an experiment to see what develops from such a swarm.
Will something like intelligent behavior emerge? Will anything emerge? The
project consists of designing and building the swarm and then observing its
that an individual agent is not intelligent. We seek intelligence in the swarm.
- Have a way to advertise itself as an expert service provider of a certain
service. Make it more likely that those agents that need this service
can find it. For example, after an agent fulfills its goal it may stay
around to help others. It can have a way to accumulate partial results in
fulfillment of its goal.
- It's meeting strategy
can be flexible rather than rigid--it can learn how to move around. Opportunistic.
- An agent can have a
goal of getting information about colon cancer
treatment and returning it to a person.
- It can provide knowledge that it has already learned as it moves
- It can also remember
the source of somewhat related information.
- It can move through the web as a crawler does, or use bluetooth...,
or learn a new strategy from another agent.
- It can use some simple
ai features to query other agents and provide answers to queries from other
- "What do you need?
What form do you require..."
- "I need English
text based information about ... "
- JINI agents with negotiated rather than hard coded interfaces might come
close to this goal.
- Swarm Computing has
a growing research body.
Last Updated: May 5, 2002