Evolving Social Rationality for MAS using “Tags”
CPM Report No.: 02-104
By: David Hales and Bruce Edmonds
Date: 12th Nov 2002.
Published as: Hales, D. and Edmonds, B. (2003) Evolving Social Rationality
for MAS using “Tags”. In Rosenschein, J. S., et al. (eds.) Proceedings of the
2nd International Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multiagent Systems
(AAMAS03), ACM Press, 497-503.
Endowing agents with “social rationality” can aid overall efficiency in
tasks where cooperation is beneficial to system level performance.
However it is difficult to maintain this beneficial effect in open and
unpredictable systems. Such systems seem to require a “bespoke” design
for cooperation in each domain. Recent work in artificial life and
biological sciences has identified novel “tag” mechanisms for the
spontaneous self-organization of group level adaptations in populations
of autonomous agents. We summarize these findings and identify a key
application (in MAS) to which these mechanisms may be fruitfully
applied. An intriguing aspect of these mechanisms is that (in certain
circumstances) there is a negative scaling cost – that is, the more
agents in a system the better and more quickly organized they become.
Also, since the process is driven by individual (bounded) optimization,
agents retain a high degree of autonomy but still evolve behaviors that
are socially rational even in open systems. Initial results indicate
that the harnessing of such a process in MAS may be a viable
alternative to the engineering of specific cooperation mechanisms and