FIPA Failure Communicative Act Specification


Document title

FIPA Failure Communicative Act Specification

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Date of this status





Change history


Deprecated by FIPA00037


Line numbering added











2000 Foundation for Intelligent Physical Agents -

Geneva, Switzerland


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1 Scope. 1

2 Failure. 2

3 References. 3

1         Scope

This document specifies the Failure communicative act that is compliant to [FIPA00037] requirements.



2         Failure


The action of telling another agent that an action was attempted but the attempt failed.


A tuple, consisting of an action expression and a proposition giving the reason for the failure.


The failure act is an abbreviation for informing that an act was considered feasible by the sender, but was not completed for some given reason.


The agent receiving a failure act is entitled to believe that:


         the action has not been done, and,


         the action is (or, at the time the agent attempted to perform the action, was) feasible


The (causal) reason for the refusal is represented by the proposition, which is the third term of the tuple. It may be the constant true. Often it is the case that there is little either agent can do to further the attempt to perform the action.

Formal Model

<i, failure(j, a, f)>
<i, inform(j, (
$e) Single(e) Done(e, Feasible(a) Ii Done(a)) f
Done(a) Ii Done(a))>

FP: BiaBi (Bifja Uifja)




a = ($e) Single(e) Done(e, Feasible(a) Ii Done(a))
fDone(a) Ii Done(a)


Agent i informs agent j that, in the past, i had the intention to do action a and a was feasible. i performed the action of attempting to do a, that is, the action/event e is the attempt to do a, but now a has not been done and i no longer has the intention to do a, and f is true.


The informal implication is that f is the reason that the action failed, though this causality is not expressed formally in the semantic model.


Agent j informs i that it has failed to open a file.



:sender j

:receiver i

((action j "open( \"foo.txt\ )")
(error-message "No such file: foo.txt"))
:language FIPA-SL)

3         References

[FIPA00037] FIPA Communicative Act Library Specification. Foundation for Intelligent Physical Agents, 2000.