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Contrary to symbolic learning approaches, which represent a learned concept explicitly, case-based approaches describe concepts implicitly by a pair (CB; sim), i.e. by a measure of similarity sim and a set CB of cases. This poses the question if there are any differences concerning the learning power of the two approaches. In this article we will study the relationship between the case base, the measure of similarity, and the target concept of the learning process. To do so, we transform a simple symbolic learning algorithm (the version space algorithm) into an equivalent case- based variant. The achieved results strengthen the hypothesis of the equivalence of the learning power of symbolic and case-based methods and show the interdependency between the measure used by a case-based algorithm and the target concept.

A large set of criteria to evaluate formal methods for reactive systems is presented. To make this set more comprehensible, it is structured according to a Concept-Model of formal methods. It is made clear that it is necessary to make the catalogue more specific before applying it. Some of the steps needed to do so are explained. As an example the catalogue is applied within the context of the application domain building automation systems to three different formal methods: SDL, statecharts, and a temporallogic.

In this paper we give the definition of a solution concept in multicriteria combinatorial optimization. We show how Pareto, max-ordering and lexicographically optimal solutions can be incorporated in this framework. Furthermore we state some properties of lexicographic max-ordering solutions, which combine features of these three kinds of optimal solutions. Two of these properties, which are desirable from a decision maker" s point of view, are satisfied if and only of the solution concept is that of lexicographic max-ordering.

A new approach for modelling time that does not rely on the concept of a clock is proposed. In order to establish a notion of time, system behaviour is represented as a joint progression of multiple threads of control, which satisfies a certain set of axioms. We show that the clock-independent time model is related to the well-known concept of a global clock and argue that both approaches establish the same notion of time.

Coloring terms (rippling) is a technique developed for inductive theorem proving which uses syntactic differences of terms to guide the proof search. Annotations (colors) to terms are used to maintain this information. This technique has several advantages, e.g. it is highly goal oriented and involves little search. In this paper we give a general formalization of coloring terms in a higher-order setting. We introduce a simply-typed lambda calculus with color annotations and present an appropriate (pre-)unification algorithm. Our work is a formal basis to the implementation of rippling in a higher-order setting which is required e.g. in case of middle-out reasoning. Another application is in the construction of natural language semantics, where the color annotations rule out linguistically invalid readings that are possible using standard higher-order unification.

This paper develops a sound and complete transformation-based algorithm forunification in an extensional order-sorted combinatory logic supporting constantoverloading and a higher-order sort concept. Appropriate notions of order-sortedweak equality and extensionality - reflecting order-sorted fij-equality in thecorresponding lambda calculus given by Johann and Kohlhase - are defined, andthe typed combinator-based higher-order unification techniques of Dougherty aremodified to accommodate unification with respect to the theory they generate. Thealgorithm presented here can thus be viewed as a combinatory logic counterpartto that of Johann and Kohlhase, as well as a refinement of that of Dougherty, andprovides evidence that combinatory logic is well-suited to serve as a framework forincorporating order-sorted higher-order reasoning into deduction systems aimingto capitalize on both the expressiveness of extensional higher-order logic and theefficiency of order-sorted calculi.

This paper describes a system that supports softwaredevelopment processes in virtual software corporations. A virtual software corporation consists of a set of enterprisesthat cooperate in projects to fulfill customer needs. Contracts are negotiated in the whole lifecycle of asoftware development project. The negotiations really influence the performance of a company. Therefore, it isuseful to support negotiations and planning decisions with software agents. Our approach integrates software agentapproaches for negotiation support with flexible multiserver workflow engines.

The concept of the Virtual Software Corporation ( VSC) has recently become a practical reality as a result of advances in communication and distributed technologies. However, there are significant difficulties with the management of the software development process within a VSC. The main problem is the significantly increased communicational complexity of the process model for such developments. The more classic managerial hierarchy is generally replaced by a "flatter" network of commitments. Therefore new solution approaches are required to provide the necessary process support. The purpose of this paper is to present a solution approach which models the process based on deontic logic. The approach has been validated against a case study where it was used to model commitments and inter-human communications within the software development process of a VSC. The use of the formalism is exemplified through a prototype system using a layered multi-agent architecture.