Toward team-oriented programming


D. V. Pynadath, Milind Tambe, N. Chauvat, and L. Cavedon. 1999. “Toward team-oriented programming .” In Agents, theories, architectures and languages (ATAL'99) workshop, to be published in Springer Verlag 'Intelligent Agents VI'.


t. The promise of agent-based systems is leading towards the development of autonomous, heterogeneous agents, designed by a variety of research/industrial groups and distributed over a variety of platforms and environments. Teamwork among these heterogeneous agents is critical in realizing the full potential of these systems and scaling up to the demands of large-scale applications. Unfortunately, development of robust, flexible agent teams is currently extremely difficult. This paper focuses on significantly accelerating the process of building such teams using a simplified, abstract framework called team-oriented programming (TOP). In TOP, a programmer specifies an agent organization hierarchy and the team tasks for the organization to perform, abstracting away from the innumerable coordination plans potentially necessary to ensure robust and flexible team operation. Our TEAMCORE system supports TOP through a distributed, domain-independent layer that integrates core teamwork coordination and communication capabilities. We have recently used TOP to integrate a diverse team of heterogeneous distributed agents in performing a complex task. We outline the current state of our TOP implementation and the outstanding issues in developing such a framework.
See also: 1999