Action-Based Alternating Transition Systems for Arguments about Action

Katie Atkinson, Trevor Bench-Capon

This paper presents a formalism to describe practical reasoning in terms of an Action-based Alternating Transition System (AATS). The starting point is a previously specified account of practical reasoning that treats reasoning about what action should be chosen as presumptive argumentation using argument schemes and associated critical questions. This paper describes how this account can be extended to situations where the effect of an action is partially dependent upon the choices of another agent. In this context we see practical reasoning as proceeding in three stages. The first involves determining the representation of the particular problem scenario as an AATS. Next the agent must resolve its uncertainties as to its position in the scenario. Finally, the agent moves to choosing a particular action to achieve its ends, proposing presumptive reasons for particular actions and subjecting them to a critique to establish their suitability, taking into account the choices that can be made by the other agents involved. This account thus provides a well-specified basis for addressing the problems of practical reasoning as presumptive argumentation in a multi-agent context.

Subjects: 7.1 Multi-Agent Systems; 7.2 Software Agents

Submitted: Apr 24, 2007

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