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Hierarchical model and communication by signs, signals and symbols in multiagent environments

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In this paper, a framework based on the skills, rules and knowledge taxonomy of Rasmussen is proposed. Precisely, a reflexive level is developed so as to reflect the fully automated activities, then a rule level to reflect stereotyped actions, and finally a knowledge level to reflect conscious activities involving distributed decision making. In fact, the basic goal of this framework is twofold: first, not to force processing to a higher level (i.e. the knowledge level) than the situation requires, and to support each of the three levels of cognitive control. More precisely, the proposed framework should allow agents to prefer the lower skills and rules levels rather than the higher knowledge level because it is generally easier to obtain and maintain coordination between agents in routine and familiar situations than in unfamiliar situations. The framework should also support each of the three levels because complex tasks combined with complex interactions require all levels. To permit agents to rely on low levels, a suggestion is developed. When it is possible, agents have to communicate by signals and signs since signals generally invoke a stimulus or a reaction that is a routine situation, whereas signs generally activate familiar situations. Finally, implementation and experiments demonstrated, on some scenarios of urban traffic, the applicability of concepts developed in this article.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 1996

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