Automating Signature Evolution in Logical Theories

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Abstract

The automation of reasoning as deduction in logical theories is well established. Such logical theories are usually inherited from the literature or are built manually for a particular reasoning task. They are then regarded as fixed. We will argue that they should be regarded as fluid.

  1. As Pólya and others have argued, appropriate representation is the key to successful problem solving [Pólya, 1945]. It follows that a successful problem solver must be able to choose or construct the representation best suited to solving the current problem. Some of the most seminal episodes in human problem solving required radical representational change.

  2. Automated agents use logical theories called ontologies. For different agents to communicate they must align their ontologies. When a large, diverse and evolving community of autonomous agents are continually engaged in online negotiations, it is not practical to manually pre-align the ontologies of all agent pairs - it must be done dynamically and automatically.

  3. Persistent agents must be able to cope with a changing world and changing goals. This requires evolving their ontologies as their problem solving task evolves. The W3C call this ontology evolution.