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It is worth pointing out, that in addition there is a very large and old literature simulating spatial interactions in transport, in particular for traffic flow and travel behaviour. Differing levels of behavioural complexity and wide ranges in the numbers of agents (from the low thousands into the millions)

Kay Axhausen


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Prof KW Axhausen
IVT
ETH
CH - 8093 Zürich

Tel. +41-44-633 3943
Fax. +41-44-633 1057
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-----Original Message-----
From: Social Networks Discussion Forum [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Maksim Tsvetovat
Sent: Dienstag, 8. November 2005 16:50
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Any recommendations re literature on multi-agent systems and social networks

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> I've had a little trouble finding a good introduction; these models
> seem to go by a wide variety of names.  A couple hours of googling left
> me rather confused.

The main problem with multi-agent modeling is that 3 or 4 communities
that routinely use
its techniques hardly ever talk to each other, and speak very
different languages. Assumptions also vary widely, and greatly affect
the outcomes.

Here's a smattering of things to look for:
From Artificial Intelligence world - look for Belief/Desire/Intention
(BDI) model of agent behaviour;
agents tend to be complex but are embedded in simple social structures
(frequently all-to-all or star topologies); large numbers of agents
are infrequent. Also look for papers on SOAR.

Cellular Automata world - Wolfram, etc. - very simple agents in large
numbers, sitting on grids, reproducing complexity but not necessarily
modeling the exact phenomena.

Repast/NetLogo/Mason - in between the last two on agent complexity,
agents can be very simple or range up to some level of cognitive
accuracy; grids are fading away in favour of irregular neighborhoods
and networks

Multi-Agent Network Simulation - Construct, DyNet, NetWatch - agents
are cognitive automata, making locally optimal decisions based on
theoretical underpinnings (such as information diffusion theory).
Networks or proximities are not pre-assigned but a product of the
cognitive interactions and local rules.

I'm not giving you exact citations - but I think this should be enough
keywords to google for.

Max Tsvetovat
George Mason University
Center for Social Complexity

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