Hypothetical Reasoning

  • Joao P. Martins
  • Stuart C. Shapiro


We present a domain-independent reasoning system that is able to perform hypothetical reasoning. A person working with our system may raise hypotheses, request the system to reason from them, adding the results obtained to a knowledge base, and may discard any of the hypotheses raised, which automatically makes inacessible to the reasoning program every piece of knowledge depending on the hypothesis (or hypotheses) discarded.

The novelty of our approach to hypothetical reasoning lies in the way that we switch reasoning contexts. The system is able to return to a previous state of reasoning, without performing any backtracking at all. With our approach the system maintains several contexts, defined by different and even competing sets of hypotheses, may switch back and forth between contexts, and may compare results obtained in different contexts.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joao P. Martins
    • 1
  • Stuart C. Shapiro
    • 2
  1. 1.Departamento de Engenharia Mecanica1000 LisboaPortugal
  2. 2.Department of Computer ScienceState University of New York at BuffaloBuffaloUSA

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