Satisficing was introduced by the economist Herbert Simon to allow for decisions that are "good enough" when there are insufficient computational resources and knowledge to obtain the optimal outcome. Autonomous multi-agent systems often require such decision making because of the complexity and unknown factors present in such an environment. Satisficing has been extended significantly by Wynn Stirling. Through extended satisficing, he has departed from conventional approaches to autonomous multi-agent systems, based as they usually are on the assumption that each participant is motivated exclusively by its own self interest, and will therefore attempt to maximize its benefit, regardless of the benefit or cost to others. He considers an alternative view based on the assumption that, when forming its preferences, the agent is willing to take into consideration the preferences of others. This thesis explores the application of satisficing to simulated soccer, an autonomous multi-agent system with significant inherent complexity. The work described in this thesis shows that satisficing provides an easy way to switch between an agent's various roles, to take into consideration the likely goals and actions of other agents, and to work in conjunction with a genetic algorithm to help optimize parameters. Some principles of developing simple and concise satisficing code are suggested. Satisficing is thus shown to be an effective solution to decision making in complex multi-agent systems.



College and Department

Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology; Electrical and Computer Engineering



Date Submitted


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satisficing, simulated, soccer, multi-agent, autonomous, complexity, probability, genetic, preferences