FOUNDATION FOR INTELLIGENT PHYSICAL AGENTS

 

Document title:

Minimal FIPA and FIPA Compliance Levels Work Plan

Document number:

f-wp-00018

Document source:

(see authors below)

Document status:

Approved

Date of this status:

2001/10/08

Change history:

2001/07/19

Initial draft

2001/07/23

Changes by TC Gateways during FIPA Sendai meeting

2001/09/07

Update for resubmission to the FAB

2001/10/08

FAB comments (see end)

 

Michael Berger Michael Watzke

Michael.Berger@mchp.siemens.de Michael.Watzke@mchp.siemens.de

 

 

Problem Statement: FIPA specifies parts of agent platforms and provides a definition of platform-compliance by defining normative specifications with mandatory parts for internal and external platform behavior. To be FIPA-compliant, a platform has to implement all current mandatory specifications while FIPA-compliance does not specify whether an agent platform is running completely on one machine / device or whether it is distributed over several machines / devices (compliance refers to Agent Management Specifications and Message Transport Specifications). The agent platform can be based on devices with very limited resources, e.g. mobile phones, where it is impossible to support all relevant functionality defined as mandatory by FIPA. Furthermore, applications and platform providers often do not need support of all the mandatory functionality, but instead only use certain parts of it.

 

Objective: There are five main objectives of this work plan:

         Definition of the process of defining compliance levels that means: which kind of specifications should be considered (preliminary, experimental, standard) and how to deal with changes to the specifications used in defining compliance levels.

         We need definitions of several levels of the term FIPA compliance (specifically compliance refers to Agent Management Specifications and Message Transport Specifications). There will be a minimal-FIPA compliance level which represents the lowest requirements, up to a full-FIPA compliance level which comprises the highest requirements (all current mandatory parts of normative specifications). In between, there may be different levels which group specific functionality together.

         For the definition of these FIPA compliance levels, mandatory and optional functionality of all informal and formal specifications should be taken into account.

         Until now, the definition of the term FIPA compliance was always related to the platform. What we also need is a more device specific view which allows to express, up to which level the software in a device (as part of an agent platform) is FIPA compliant. That is important for device manufacturers, which do not want to provide platforms, but want to sell devices with FIPA-compliant software on it.

         Existing specifications should be harmonized if necessary.

 

Technology: The definition of the compliance levels will be based on criteria from platform, application and service development as well as include requirements from device manufacturers.

 

Specifications generated: There will be a new specification which will take all existing specifications into account, which define FIPA2000 compliance or all relevant specifications during execution of that work plan.

 

Plan for Work and Milestones: The plan is for a 16 month program of work and includes the following steps:

 

2001/09 Finish work plan, publish work plan, get acceptance from FAB

2001/10 Establish TC, open call for contributions

2002/01 Deadline for contributions

2002/01 Presentation of contributions, structuring, discussion

2002/07 Deliver first draft of preliminary specification

2002/10 Review specification, second draft

2003/01 Review specification, third draft

2003/04 Making specification as experimental

 

Future Work: After finishing that specification, it has to be updated with the outcome of every new specification or change to any previous specification in order to keep the compliance level definition up to date. That update process definition is going to be a part of the outcome of that work plan as well.

 

Dependencies:

FIPA Abstract Architecture Specification

FIPA Human-Agent Interaction Specification

FIPA Nomadic Application Support Specification

FIPA Agent Communication and Content Languages Specifications

FIPA Agent Security Management Specification

FIPA Agent Management and Configuration Specifications

FIPA Interaction Protocol Specifications

FIPA Communicative Act Specifications

FIPA ACL Message Structure and Representation Specifications

FIPA Agent Message Transport Specifications

FIPA Agent Software Integration Specifications

FIPA Device Ontology and Ontology Service Specifications

FIPA Domains and Policies Specification

 

Additional References:

 

Support:

         Fabio Bellifemine (TI Labs)

         Bernard Burg (HP Labs)

         Patricia Charlton (Motorola)

         Heimo Laamanen (Sonera)

         Heikki Helin (Sonera)

         Jamie Lawrence (Broadcom)

         Stefan Poslad (Queen Mary University London)

         John Shepherdson (British Telecommunications)

         Steven Willmott (EPFL)

 

FAB Comments:

This work plan has been approved and has been assigned to the Compliance Technical Committee.