As the previous chapters of this book have shown, case-based reasoning is a technology that has been successfully applied to a large range of different tasks. Through all the different CBR projects, both basic research projects as well as industrial development projects, lots of knowledge and experience about how to build a CBR application has been collected. Today, there is already an increasing number of successful companies developing industrial CBR applications. In former days, these companies could develop their early pioneering CBR applications in an ad-hoc manner. The highly-skilled CBR expert of the company was able to manage these projects and to provide the developers with the required expertise.
Object-oriented case representations require approaches for similarity assessment that allow to compare two differently structured objects, in particular, objects belonging to different object classes. Currently, such similarity measures are developed more or less in an ad-hoc fashion. It is mostly unclear, how the structure of an object-oriented case model, e.g., the class hierarchy, influences similarity assessment. Intuitively, it is obvious that the class hierarchy contains knowledge about the similarity of the objects. However, how this knowledge relates to the knowledge that could be represented in similarity measures is not obvious at all. This paper analyzes several situations in which class hierarchies are used in different ways for case modeling and proposes a systematic way of specifying similarity measures for comparing arbitrary objects from the hierarchy. The proposed similarity measures have a clear semantics and are computationally inexpensive to compute at run-time.
This paper presents a brief overview of the INRECA-II methodology for building and maintaining CBR applications. It is based on the experience factory and the software process modeling approach from software engineering. CBR development and maintenance experience is documented using software process models and stored in a three-layered experience packet.
Although several systematic analyses of existing approaches to adaptation have been published recently, a general formal adaptation framework is still missing. This paper presents a step into the direction of developing such a formal model of transformational adaptation. The model is based on the notion of the quality of a solution to a problem, while quality is meant in a more general sense and can also denote some kind of appropriateness, utility, or degree of correctness. Adaptation knowledge is then defined in terms of functions transforming one case into a successor case. The notion of quality provides us with a semantics for adaptation knowledge and allows us to define terms like soundness, correctness and completeness. In this view, adaptation (and even the whole CBR process) appears to be a special instance of an optimization problem.
For defining attribute types to be used in the case representation, taxonomies occur quite often. The symbolic values at any node of the taxonomy tree are used as attribute values in a case or a query. A taxonomy type represents a relationship between the symbols through their position within the taxonomy-tree which expresses knowledge about the similarity between the symbols. This paper analyzes several situations in which taxonomies are used in different ways and proposes a systematic way of specifying local similarity measures for taxonomy types. The proposed similarity measures have a clear semantics and are easy to compute at runtime.
This paper motivates the necessity for support for negotiation during Sales Support on the Internet within Case-Based Reasoning solutions. Different negotiation approaches are discussed and a general model of the sales process is presented. Further, the tradition al CBR-cycle is modified in such a way that iterative retrieval during a CBR consulting session is covered by the new model. Several gen eral characteristics of negotiation are described and a case study is shown where preliminary approaches are used to negotiate with a cu stomer about his demands and available products in a 'CBR-based' Electronic Commerce solution.