From: The Intelligent Software Agents/RETSINA Lab, The Robotics Institute, Carnegie Mellon University

Contact:Lori Price, Writer/Editor:nospam-lrprice at cs dot cmu dot edu

Written by: Michael D. Rectenwald, June 2001


MOCHA: Personalized Agents Coordinate and Simplify Communications




Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University's Intelligent Software Agents Lab in The Robotics Institute have created software that answers the problems associated with reaching users who rely on multiple means of communication. Rather than adding another element to the communications puzzle--like email, a cell phone, a laptop, a digital pager, or a PDA--software programs known as "personalized agents" will coordinate all of these means of communication and information delivery.


The project, known as MOCHA (Mobile Communication of Hetereogenous Agents), is a multi-agent system for "anyware" communications and display--a mobile communications network that runs on any platform and reaches users anywhere by any means possible. Using MOCHA, human users create personal agents who perform communications and planning tasks that humans could not otherwise accomplish. MOCHA provides a seamless, single interface for users who access a complex array of day-to-day technology. Users are presented with a familiar, intuitive interface to create and manage their personal agents. Customized user preferences form the basis of agent interactions to carry out tasks. Personal agents locate and contact other users, and help plan and schedule collaborative tasks with the personalized agents of other users. Personal agents also use new display technologies to present information in the most appropriate or accessible form.


With the benefit of MOCHA's personalized agents, users are provided with a single mechanism that leaves the multiple sources for contact up to the personalized agent itself. The agent decides on methods of delivery based on agent knowledge of sender and receiver preferences and device availability and capability. The MOCHA agent system is designed to allow easy entrance by novice users and fits in seamlessly with existing commercial products such as the Microsoft Office™ suite.


With MOCHA and similar projects, the Intelligent Software Agents Lab opens new frontiers in pervasive software, creating unobtrusive, helping agents who interact with and aids humans in a variety of tasks, including financial portfolio management, logistics planning in military applications, launch and other tasks in space travel, and mobile communications and display, among other applications.


Carnegie Mellonís Intelligent Software Agents Lab leads the world in agent technology, solving problems that others are only beginning to take note of, and applying that technology to multiple domains. We welcome you and/or members of your writing staff to come and experience demonstrations of our software agent technology and several of its applications.


The Intelligent Software Agents/RETSINA Lab, The Robotics Institute, Carnegie Mellon University

Pittsburgh, PA 15213


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