Dr. Vasant Honavar
Artificial Intelligence Research Group
Department of Computer Science and
210 Atanasoff Hall
Iowa State University
Voice: 515 294-1098, Fax: 515 294-0258
Meeting Time: Monday and Wednesday 12:30 to 2:00pm
Meeting Place: 217 Atanasoff Hall
Intelligent agents (knowbots, softbots, and robots) are software or hardware entities that perform a set of tasks on behalf of a user with some degree of autonomy. They find applications in a variety of domains including: Internet-based information systems, adaptive (customizable) software systems, autonomous mobile and immobile robots, data mining and knowledge discovery, smart systems (smart homes, smart automobiles, etc.), decision support systems, and intelligent design and manufacturing systems. Current research on intelligent agents and multi-agent systems builds on developments in several areas of computer science including: artificial intelligence (especially agent architectures, machine learning, planning, distributed problem-solving), information retrieval, database and knowledge-base systems, and distributed computing.
The Spring 1998 offering of the course will cover selected topics in intelligent agents and multi-agent systems with emphasis on the following:
The course will strike a balance between algorithms and techniques that have already been used widely in the field as well as open research problems and approaches at the edge of the state of the art in these fields. The target audience for this course are primarily graduate students who are interested in Artificial Intelligence or its applications to problems in other areas of computer science (e.g., computer networks, intelligent databases, information retrieval, program synthesis, automated discovery, automated design, robotics, operating systems, parallel and distributed computing). Interested undergraduates who have completed ComS 472 with a grade of A- or better are welcome to register for the course. The course might also be of interest to some graduate students in engineering, especially those that are interested in application of Intelligent Agents (e.g., in distributed design and manufacturing, power systems, scheduling, etc.).
Prerequisites: An introductory course (senior undergrad or first year grad) course in AI is recommended. However, anyone with a sufficiently broad background in Computer Science (e.g., a few 500-level CS courses at ISU or comparable courses taken elsewhere) should find the material fairly accessible.
Grading in this course will be based on assignments (some of which might include reading and presenting papers) 2-4 group projects, and 1-2 take-home examinations. The projects will involve working with mobile agent platforms, designing and implementing applications, and writing short papers describing the work.
There is no required textbook for this course. Recommended texts are:
Additional list of Recommended Reference Books is available here. (Several books on this list are available on reserve at the Iowa State University Library)