Software Agents: Interviews
NOV 04, 2013 12:57 PM
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Nearly 20 years after the 1st workshop on Agent Theories, Architectures, and Languages (ATAL'94) at ECAI'94, which many assume as a starting point of intensive agent systems research, we asked some of the most prominent and active researchers in the field to share their views on a few fundamental questions about software agents.

The responses from Costin Badica, Lars Braubach, Giancarlo Fortino, and Giovanni Rimassa provide quite a composite view of the status and perspectives of research on agents and multi-agent systems, as well as on their future applications.


  1. Where is research on agent systems today and where is it heading? What are the largest successes and failures to date, and what are the most important lessons learned?
  2. Which are the most successful applications of software agents in the real world? Which are the next application areas for them, and are humans ready to interact with software agents in their everyday lives?
  3. What is your perspective on agents standards? Is the current status of FIPA as an IEEE body satisfactory, or do we need something else?
  4. What's still missing in the area of agent platforms, languages, and tools?


Costin Badica Costin Badica is a professor in the Computers and Information Technology Department at the University of Craiova, Romania. He has a PhD in Control Systems from University of Craiova. His research interests are at the intersection of artificial intelligence, distributed systems and software engineering. He has more than 100 publications in journal articles, book chapters, and conference papers, more than 10 guest-edited journal special issues, as well as several edited books. Contact him at

Lars Braubach Lars Braubach is a senior researcher and project leader in the Distributed Systems Group, University of Hamburg. He has a PhD in computer science from the University of Hamburg. His research aims at enhancing the software technical means for developing distributed applications and targets technology transfer from research to industry. He is co-inventor of the active components approach, which brings together agents with components and services characteristics, and he has been one of the Jadex agent platform's core architects since 2003. He has supported several technology transfer projects with industrial partners such as Daimler and Uniique AG and published more than 80 papers at international workshops, conferences, and journals. Contact him at

Giancarlo Fortin Giancarlo Fortino is an associate professor of computer engineering in the Department of Informatics, Modeling, Electronics, and Systems (DIMES), University of Calabria (Unical), Rende, Italy. He has a PhD in computer engineering from Unical. His research interests include distributed computing, wireless sensor networks, software agents, cloud computing, and multimedia networks. He has authored more than 200 publications in journals, conferences, and books, and currently serves on the editorial boards of Journal of Networks and Computer Applications, Engineering Applications of Artificial Intelligence, Information Fusion, and Multi Agent and GRID Systems. He is cofounder and CEO of SenSysCal, a spin-off of Unical, developing innovative sensor-based systems for e-health and domotics. He is IEEE Senior member. Contact him at

Giovanni Rimassa Giovanni Rimassa is a product manager at Whitestein Technologies. He has a PhD in information engineering from Università degli Studi di Parma. His professional interests include intelligent business process management, agent middleware, product innovation and technology transfer. Active on the agent scene since 1997 with his seminal work on the JADE platform, he has published more than 60 papers on journals and conferences. He is a member of IEEE and IEEE Computer Society. Contact him at

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