About these proceedings
The challenge faced in today’s manufacturing and business environments is the question of how to satisfy increasingly stringent customer requirements while managing growing system complexity. For example, customers expect high-quality, customizable, low-cost products that can be delivered quickly. The systems that deliver these expectations are by nature distributed, concurrent, and stochastic, and, as a result, increasingly difficult to manage. Unfortunately, the traditional hierarchical, strictly centralized approach to control used in these domains is characteristically inflexible, fragile, and difficult to maintain. These shortcomings have led to the development of a new class of manufacturing and supply-chain decision-making approaches in recent years. Solutions based on these approaches usually explore a set of highly distributed decision-making units that are capable of autonomous operations while cooperating interactively to resolve larger problems. The units, referred to as agents in classical computer science and software engineering, or holons if physically integrated with the manufacturing hardware, interact by exchanging information. These units are motivated by arriving at local solutions as well as collaborating and sharing resources and goals in solving the overall problem in question collectively.
agent-based manufacturing algorithms automation control systems data mining distributed computing fault-tolerant production control holarchies intelligent diagnostics mulit-agent systems multi-agent system ontology robot semantic web visualization