This paper presents new significant advances in the Disciple approach for building knowledge-based systems by subject matter experts. It describes the innovative application of this approach to the development of an agent for the analysis of strategic centers of gravity in military conflicts. This application has been deployed in several courses at the US Army War College, and its use has been evaluated. The presented results are those of a multifaceted research and development effort that synergistically integrates research in Artificial Intelligence, Center of Gravity analysis, and practical deployment of an agent into Education.
We are addressing the knowledge acquisition bottleneck in the development of knowledge-based systems by elaborating the Disciple theory and methodology that enables subject matter experts to build such systems by themselves, with limited assistance from knowledge engineers (Tecuci 1998). The investigated solution consists of developing a very capable learning agent shell that can perform many of the functions of a knowledge engineer. As an expert system shell, the learning agent shell includes a general problem solving engine that can be reused for multiple applications. In addition, it includes a multistrategy learning engine for building its knowledge base (KB) which has two main components: an object ontology that defines the concepts from a specific application domain, and a set of task reduction rules expressed with these concepts. The subject matter expert and the agent engage into a mixed-initiative reasoning process during which the expert is teaching the agent his problem solving expertise, and the agent learns from the expert, building, verifying, and improving its KB.
This article presents the results of a multifaceted research and development effort that synergistically integrates AI research with military strategy research and practical deployment of agents into education. It describes recent advances in the DISCIPLE approach to agent development by subject-matter experts with limited assistance from knowledge engineers, the innovative application of DISCIPLE to the development of agents for the strategic center of gravity analysis, and the deployment and evaluation of these agents in several courses at the U.S. Army War College.
This article presents the results of a multifaceted research and development effort that synergistically integrates AI research with military strategy research and practical deployment of agents into education. A distinguishing feature of this collaboration is the synergistic integration of AI research with military strategy research and the practical use of agents in education, as detailed in the following. View on the Evolution of the Software Development Process. strategic leaders at all the United States senior military service colleges, there is a great emphasis on the center of gravity analysis (Strange 1996). Hence, we have the third objective of this research, the educational objective of enhancing the educational process of senior military officers through the use of intelligent agent technology. Both programs emphasized the use of innovative challenge problems to focus and evaluate the research and development efforts.
This paper presents several design principles used in the development of the Disciple learning agents. The process of developing such an agent relies on importing ontologies from existing knowledge repositories, and on teaching the agent how to perform various tasks, in a way that resembles how an expert would teach a human apprentice when solving problems in cooperation. Experimental results support the usefulness of the presented principles which may be useful for the development of other agents.