Kagan Tumer's Publications

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Combining Coordination Mechanisms to improve the Performance of Multi-Robot Teams. E. Nasroullahi and K. Tumer. Artificial Intelligence Research, 1(2):1–10, 2012.

Abstract

Coordinating multiagent systems to maximize global information collection is a key challenge in many real world applications such as planetary exploration, and search and rescue. In particular, in many domains where communication is expensive (e.g. in terms of energy), the coordination must be achieved in a passive manner, without agents explicitly informing other agents of their states and/or intended actions. In this work, we extend results on such multiagent coordination algorithms to domains where the agents cannot achieve the required tasks without forming teams. We investigate team formation in three types of domains, one where n agents need to perform a task for the team to receive credit, one where there is an optimal number of agents (n) required for the task, but where the agents receive a decaying reward if they form a team with membership other than n, and finally we investigate heterogeneous teams where individuals vary in construction. Our results show that encouraging agents to coordinate is more successful than strictly requiring coordination. We also show that devising agent objective functions that are aligned with the global objective and locally computable significantly outperform systems where agents directly use the global objective, and that the improvement increases with the complexity of the task.

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BibTeX Entry

@article{tumer-nasroullahi_air12,
	author = {E. Nasroullahi and K. Tumer},
	title = {Combining Coordination Mechanisms to improve the Performance of  Multi-Robot Teams},
	journal = {Artificial Intelligence Research},
	bib2html_pubtype = {Journal Articles},
	bib2html_rescat = {Multiagent Systems, Robotics},
	volume = {1},
	number = {2},
	pages ={1-10},
	abstract ={Coordinating multiagent systems to maximize global information collection is a key challenge in many real world applications such as planetary exploration, and search and rescue. In particular, in many domains where communication is expensive (e.g. in terms of energy), the coordination must be achieved in a passive manner, without agents explicitly informing other agents of their states and/or intended actions.  In this work, we extend results on such multiagent coordination algorithms to domains where the agents cannot achieve the required tasks without forming teams. We investigate team formation in three types of domains, one where n agents need to perform a task for the team to receive credit, one where there is an optimal number of agents (n) required for the task, but where the agents receive a decaying reward if they form a team with membership other than n, and finally we investigate heterogeneous teams where individuals vary in construction.  Our results show that encouraging agents to coordinate is  more successful than strictly requiring coordination. We also show that devising agent objective functions that are aligned with the global objective and locally computable significantly outperform systems where  agents directly use the global objective, and that the improvement  increases with the complexity of the task.},
	year = {2012}
} 

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