FIPA Compliant Agents

Basic structure of the multi-agent system compliant to FIPA is shown in figure below. An agent is a fundamental actor on an agent platform. Agent platform (AP) provides the physical infrastructure in which agents can be deployed. The AP consists of the machine(s), operating system(s), agent support software, FIPA agent management components and agents. The FIPA agent management components are as follows.

fipa reference model

FIPA Agent Management Reference Model

For communication between agents the FIPA Agent Communication Language (ACL) is standardized that is similar to KQML (Knowledge Query and Manipulation Language). An example message in this language follows.

            :sender agent1
            :receiver hpl-auction-server
            :content (price (bid good02) 150)
            :in-reply-to round-4
            :reply-with bid04
            :language sl
            :ontology hpl-auction

The ACL message contains several parameters. The only mandatory parameter is performative (communicative act - such as inform in the previous example), but most ACL messages will also contain sender, receiver and content parameters. As we can see, the ACL message is content independent. The usual language used for expressing content is a LISP-like Semantic Language SL that is based on KIF. This language allows expressing propositions and actions. Also, we can see that the content of the message is ontology independent. The ontology for the content can be specified explicitly in a message parameter.

There are several implementations of the core FIPA standards available. Probably the most popular framework is the Java Agent DEvelopment Framework (Jade).

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(c) Marek Obitko, 2007 - Terms of use