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Thesis of

Yoann Kubera

Monday 6 December 2010
Bâtiment des thèses - Université de Lille1

Simulation orientée-interactions de systèmes complexes

Philippe MATHIEU : Professeur, Université Lille 1 (Advisor)
Yves DEMAZEAU : Directeur de Recherche CNRS, Université Grenoble I
Jacques FERBER : Professeur, Université de Montpellier II
Jean-Luc DEKEYSER : Professeur, Université Lille 1
Olivier GUTKNECHT : Co-Fondator of Fotonauts Inc
Juan PAVÓN : Professeur, Universidad Complutense Madrid, Espagne
Sébastien PICAULT : Maître de conférences, Université Lille 1

This thesis focuses on the design of Multi-Agent Based Simulations (MABS). MABS are aimed at reproducing real phenomena of intuitively modeling their inner mechanisms using autonomous entities behaving in a synthetic environment. For either of the following two reasons, current MABS design techniques are unsatisfactory : the interactions are limited to exchanging messages or MABS are restricted to formal specifications. As a consequence, large-scale simulations – e.g. featuring many agents and many interactions – are still hard to design.

In this context, our research promotes a more homogeneous knowledge representation, resulting in practice into the reification of each entity by an agent and each behaviour by an interaction. That way, the simulation engine has to be separated from both the agents and the interactions, enabling the MABS to be ruled by a single and accurate algorithm. Besides, we show that the interactions can be re-used, the models incrementally designed and the implementation automated.

Based on these principles, we have developped Ioda, an interaction-oriented approach to simulation design. IODA provides a formal model for describing the agents and their interactions, a set of algorithms for unifying their action selection and a methodology for incremental design. IODA also features JEDI, a parameterizable simulation framework faithful to IODA’s principles, and JEDI-Builder, an automated tool for translating IODA models into JEDI code.

As a result of this research, it is shown that the reification of the interaction leads not only to the unification of the agent concept, but also to a simplification of the simulation design process.

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