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Holonic Mulit-Agent Systems

Christian Gerber; Jörg Siekmann; Gero Vierke
DFKI, DFKI Research Reports (RR), Vol. 99-03, 1999.


A holonic multi-agent paradigm is proposed, where agents give up parts of their autonomy and merge into a "super-agent" (a holon), that acts - when seen from the outside - just as a single agent again. We explore the spectrum of this new paradigm, ranging from definitorial issues over classification of possible application domains, an algebraic characterization of the merge operation, to implementational aspects: We propose algorithms for holon formation and on-line re-configuration. Based on some general criteria for the distinction between holonic and non-holonic domains, we examine domains suitable for holonic agents and sketch the implementation of holonic agents in these scenarios. Finally, a case study of a holonic agent system is presented in detail: TELETRUCK system is a fleet management system in the transportation domain.