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The Impact software platform supports multiagent interactions. The authors structurally define an agent, explaining what it takes for an arbitrary software program to be made an agent. Any platform that supports agent interoperability must provide a common set of services. In Impact, agents have an associated set of service descriptions, specifying the services they provide. The authors develop an HTML-like language for these descriptions. When an agent wishes to identify another agent that provides a service, the requested service must be matched, using a metric approach, against existing service descriptions. The Impact server provides a formal framework within which this can be done. The Impact server includes algorithms to compute the k-nearest matches, as well as all matches within a given distance from the requested service. The authors evaluated these algorithms in experiments with large data sets.

R. Ross, F. Ozcan, S. Kraus, T. Eiter, K. A. Arisha and V. Subrahmanian, "Impact: A Platform for Collaborating Agents," in IEEE Intelligent Systems, vol. 14, no. , pp. 64-72, 1999.
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