A flexible tool for assumption-based user modeling
The aim of this paper is to present a new flexible general-purpose shell, called UMT2 (User Modeling Tool 2), which supports the design and development process of user modeling applications and which features an original strategy for performing the modeling activity in a nonmonotonic way. More specifically, UMT2 utilizes a modeling approach called assumption-based user modeling which exploits an ATMS-like mechanism for maintaining the consistency of the user model. The modeling task is thus divided into two separate activities, one devoted to user classification and user model management, and the other devoted to consistency maintenance of the models. Modeling knowledge is represented by means of stereotypes and production rules. The ATMS mechanism is capable of identifying, at any given moment during an interaction, all the possible alternative models which are internally consistent. The choice of the most plausible one among them is then performed according to a procedure exploiting an explicit preference criterion. UMT2 is also characterized by a very well defined and easy-to-use interface with the rest of the application, and by a specialized development interface which supports the knowledge engineer during the construction of specific applications. UMT2 has been developed in CLOS Common LISP.
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