Dartmouth Workshop on Transportable Agents

September 27-28, 1996
Dartmouth College
Hanover NH

Workshop Chairs

George Cybenko, David Kotz, Daniela Rus

What are transportable agents?

Agents are programs that can act autonomously. Transportable (or "mobile") agents can migrate from host to host across the network and interact with other agents. The goal of the workshop is to identify and discuss the scientific and engineering challenges in building transportable agents to provide flexible, efficient, uniform, and reliable access to data in heterogeneous networks with non-reliable and dynamically changing resources. The foundations of transportable agents are currently being developed in several technical communities: artificial intelligence, distributed systems, and programming languages, with very little interaction and feedback.

Our forum brought together the most active researchers on transportable agents issues from these communities to define a unified long-term vision and a short-term list of scientific challenges that will focus the transportable-agent research in the three targeted areas.

List of Invitees

We encouraged agent-system builders, agent programmers, and people who have thought a lot about agents, to attend, through direct-mailings to relevant agent mailing lists. So that we could all know each other's background before the workshop, we asked people to submit
  1. a one-page abstract describing their interest in transportable agents (e.g., an agent that they are developing that might be amenable to transportable-agent technology, or a transportable-agent system they have developed), and
  2. a short bio of each potential attendee from that project


The workshop was kicked off in the evening of Friday, September 27 with a keynote by Marvin Minsky on "Forty years of A.I.," in reference to the 1956 Dartmouth conference that founded the field of Artificial Intelligence. On Saturday, topical discussions were led by Bob Gray (Dartmouth), Robert Morris, Sr. (consultant), the Tacoma folks from Cornell and Tromso (Dag Johansen, Fred Schneider, Robbert van Renesse), Kris Hammond (U Chicago), James White (Telescript), and Bob Sproull (Sun Labs).


There are no formal proceedings. Each invitee submitted an abstract so you can learn about their research that way. We also have an informal proceedings that includes a summary of each session and the slides from a few of the sessions.

Dartmouth research on transportable agents


Co-sponsored by the
Office of Naval Research

Co-sponsored by the
Air Force Office of Scientific Research

In cooperation with the
Dartmouth Institute for Advanced Graduate Studies (DAGS)

Other workshops on related themes

There are numerous agent workshops, and some mobile-code workshops. There are too many to list here.
David Kotz
Last modified: Tue Jun 3 16:40:35 1997