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The authors contend that business regulations are primarily described in declarative constraints. They regard clerical work as consistency maintenance governed by conformance to the regulations in terms of the data in business databases and application forms. From this viewpoint, they describe clerical work with a consistency-maintenance model. They develop a constraint syntax and an interactive constraint-satisfaction engine appropriate to clerical work. They rewrote an office system currently in operation using constraints. Experimental results showed that all the regulations can be easily described in constraints, and the description size was reduced by 50%. The constraints have high modularity and exhaustively cover rare cases. The response time is short enough to be feasible, and the number of interactions is almost equivalent to that of the original system. These results indicate that this method realizes a maintainable office system more easily and more effectively.

M. Ishii, S. Kaneda and Y. Sasaki, "A Constraint-Satisfaction Approach to Clerical Work," in IEEE Intelligent Systems, vol. 15, no. , pp. 64-72, 2000.
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