next up previous
Next: Coordination Services Up: JIM A Java Previous: Related Work

Communication Services

 

In our proposal, communications among agents are based on message-passing gif. However, agents do not exchange messages directly but by means of interagents. Thus, an interagent is informed by its user about the message to be sent and its addressee, and then the interagent carries out all the operations needed to deliver it correctly.

An interagent and its user can communicate in two ways:

a)
through (TCP-)stream-sockets --in case that an interagent and its user are two distinct computational processes (residing in the same computer or not)

b)
through memory I/O streams --in case that an interagent and its user are two distinct threads residing in the same process space

Concerning communication, an interagent provides its user with the following communication services based upon TCP/IP:

We have devised the Inter-Agent Protocol (IAP) to be used as interaction protocol between interagents and between an interagent and its user [15]. IAP is an application-level protocol based on the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) [8]. IAP overrides the set of request methods provided by HTTP and constrains the body of a message to be a performative of an agent communication language. For instance, the POST method is used to indicate that the performative enclosed in the message body must be addressed to the receiver indicated in the corresponding field of the performative, whereas the GET method is used to retrieve the performative(s) queued by an interagent such that match the pattern of performative enclosed in the message body.

On the other hand, interagents support a subset of KQML performatives, whose syntax has been extended with the reserved parameter keywords shown in Table 1:

 

  table98


Table 1: Reserved parameter keywords and their meanings introduced by JIM


next up previous
Next: Coordination Services Up: JIM A Java Previous: Related Work

Francisco Martin
Wed Sep 9 13:33:33 MET DST 1998