Bridging the specification protocol gap in argumentation - PhDData

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Bridging the specification protocol gap in argumentation

The thesis was published by Maghraby, Ashwag Omar, in September 2022, University of Edinburgh.


As multi-agent systems (MAS) have become more mature and systems in general
have become more distributed, it is necessary for those who want to build large scale
systems to consider, in some computational depth, how agents can communicate in
large scale, complex and distributed systems. Currently, some MAS systems have
been developed to use an abstract specification language for argumentation. This as a
basis for agent communication; to provide effective decision support for agents and
yield better agreements. However, as we build complete MAS that involve
argumentation, there is a need to produce concrete implementations in which these
abstract specifications are realised via protocols coordinating agent behaviour. This
creates a gap between standard argument specification and deployment of protocols.
This thesis attempts to close this gap by using a combination of automated synthesis
and verification methods. More precisely, this thesis proposes a means of moving
rapidly from argument specification to protocol implementation using an extension
of the Argument Interchange Format (AIF is a generic specification language for
argument structure) called a Dialogue Interaction Diagram (DID) as the dialogue
game specification language and the Lightweight Coordination Calculus (LCC is an
executable specification language used for coordinating agents in open systems) as
an implementation language.
The main contribution of this research is to provide approaches for enabling
developers of dialogue game argumentation systems to use specification languages
(in our case AIF/DID) to generate agent protocol systems that are capable of direct
implementation on open infrastructures (in our case LCC).

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