This Article 
   
 Share 
   
 Bibliographic References 
   
 Add to: 
 
Digg
Furl
Spurl
Blink
Simpy
Google
Del.icio.us
Y!MyWeb
 
 Search 
   
A Meta-Level Control Architecture for Production Systems
February 1995 (vol. 7 no. 1)
pp. 44-52

Abstract—Recent production system applications have been experiencing exceedingly difficult software maintenance problems. This is because the control of rule firings has been buried in the production rules themselves. To cope with this problem, we propose a meta-level control architecture for production systems, where procedural programming languages, such as Lisp and C, are employed to explicitly describe the control plans of production systems. The key idea of the architecture is to view production systems as a collection of independent rule processes, each of which monitors the global database and performs actions when its conditions are satisfied by the database. Procedural Control Macros (PCMs), which are based on Hoare’s CSP, are then introduced into procedural programming languages to establish communication with the collection of rule processes.

Although the PCMs are simple and easy to implement, the readability and maintainability of production system applications are greatly enhanced. Together with the original facilities of procedural languages, the PCMs enable users to efficiently specify the control plans for production systems. Furthermore, since control information is gathered into control plans, production rules can be declarative and thereby application-independent. This new feature makes it possible to develop large-scale shared rule bases. Experiments of redescribing 370 rules have been performed based on the proposed meta-level control architecture. The results demonstrate significant improvements in the readability and maintainability of those rules without any significant representation (file volumes) and runtime (processing time) overheads.

[1] ART Version 3.0 Reference Manual, Inference Corp., 1987.
[2] L. Bocionek,“Modularization of rule-based programs,” 8th Int’l Workshop on Expert Systems and Their Application, pp. 367-382, 1988.
[3] L. Brownston,R. Farrell,E. Kant, and N. Martin,Programming Expert Systems in OPS5 An Introduction to Rule-Based Programming. Addison Wesley, 1985.
[4] A. Cruise,R. Ennis,A. Finkel,J. Hellerstein,D. Klein,D. Loeb,M. Masullo,K. Milliken,H. Van Woerkom,, and N. Waite,“YES/L1: Integrating rule-based, procedural, and real-time programming for industrial Apps.,” 3rd IEEE Conf. on Art. Intel. Apps. (CAIA-87), pp. 134-139, 1987.
[5] C. Eick,“Integrating variables and operations into rule-bases forward chaining Sys.,” 6th Int’l. Symp. on Method. for Intel. Sys., 1991.
[6] C. L. Forgy,OPS5 User’s Manual, CS-81-135, Carnegie-Mellon University, 1981.
[7] C. L. Forgy,“RETE: A fast algorithm for the many pattern / many objectpattern match problem,” Art. Intel., vol. 19, pp. 17-37, 1982.
[8] C. L. Forgy, OPS83 User’s Manual and Report, Production Sys. Technologies, Inc., 1985.
[9] Y. Fukuhara,K. Suzuki,M. Kiyama,, and H. Okamoto,“Educational assistant expert system (CAIRN),” NTT R&D, vol. 39, no. 3, pp. 421-428, 1990.
[10] M. P. Georgeff,“Procedural control in production Sys.,” Art. Intel., vol. 18, pp. 175-201, 1982.
[11] M. P. Georgeff and F. F. Ingrand,“Real-time reasoning: The monitoring and control of spacecraft Sys.,” 6th IEEE Conf. on Art. Intel. Apps. (CAIA-90), pp. 198-204, 1990.
[12] C.A.R. Hoare,“Communicating sequential processes,” Comm. of the ACM, vol. 21, no. 8, pp. 666-677, Aug. 1978.
[13] C. Hsu,S. Wu,, and J. Wu,“A distributed approach for inferring production Sys.,” Int’l. Joint Conf. on Art. Intel. (IJCAI-87), pp. 62-67, 1987.
[14] T. Ishida,Y. Sasaki,, and Y. Fukuhara,“Use of procedural programming language for controlling production Sys.,” 7th IEEE Conf. on Art. Intel. Apps. (CAIA-91), pp. 71-75, 1991.
[15] T. Ishida,“Parallel rule firing in production systems,” IEEE Trans. on Knowledge and Data Engineering, vol. 3, No. 1, pp 11-17, March 1991.
[16] T. Ishida, L. Gasser, and M. Yokoo, "Organization Self-Design of Distributed Production Systems," IEEE Trans. Knowledge and Data Engineering, vol. 4, no. 2, pp. 123-134, 1992.
[17] Y. Sasaki,K. Nakata,T. Ishida,, and Y. Fukuhara,“Advantages of meta-level control architectures in maintaining rule-based Sys.,” 5th IEEE Conf. on Tools with Art. Intel. (TAI-93), pp. 495-496, 1993.
[18] T. Ishida,“An optimization algorithm for production Sys.,” IEEE Trans. on Knowl. and Data Eng., 1994.
[19] J. McDermott and C. L. Forgy,“production system conflict resolution strategies,” Pattern Directed Inference Sys., (D. A. Waterman and F. Hayes-Roth, Eds.), Academic Press, 1978.
[20] D. P. Miranker,“TREAT: A better match algorithm for AI production Sys.,” AAAI-87, pp. 42-47, 1987.
[21] I. Morihara,T. Ishida,, and H. Furuya,“Rule-based flexible control of tutoring process in scene-oriented CAI Systems,” 3rd IEEE Conf. on Art. Intel. Apps. (CAIA-87), pp. 207-212, 1987.
[22] E. Soloway,J. Bachant,, and K. Jensen,“Assessing the maintainability of XCON-in-RIME: Coping with the problem of a very large rule-base,” AAAI-87, pp. 824-829, 1987.
[23] H. Soo and M. I. Schor,“Dynamic argumentation of generalized RETE networks for demand-driven matching and rule updating,” 6th IEEE Conf. on Art. Intel. Apps. (CAIA-90), pp. 123-129, 1990.
[24] S. J. Stolfo,“Automatic discovery of heuristics for nondeterministic programs from sample execution traces,” PhD Thesis, Courant Computer Sciences, Rept. no. 18, Courant Inst., New York University, 1979.
[25] P. Surko,“Modularizing OPS5-based expert-Sys. under unix,” COMPSAC-86, pp. 58-64, 1986.
[26] D. Zisman,“Use of production Sys. for modelling asynchronous concurrent processes,” Pattern Directed Inference Sys., (D. A. Waterman and F. Hayes-Roth, Eds.), Academic Press, pp. 53-68, 1978.

Index Terms:
Expert system, meta-level control, problem solving, production rule, production system.
Citation:
Toru Ishida, Yutaka Sasaki, Keiko Nakata, Yoshimi Fukuhara, "A Meta-Level Control Architecture for Production Systems," IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering, vol. 7, no. 1, pp. 44-52, Feb. 1995, doi:10.1109/69.368519
Usage of this product signifies your acceptance of the Terms of Use.