Abstract: A mobile agent is an executing program that can migrate, at times of its own choosing, from machine to machine in a heterogeneous network. On each machine, the agent interacts with stationary service agents and other resources to accomplish its task. In this chapter, we first make the case for mobile agents, discussing six strengths of mobile agents and the applications that benefit from these strengths. Although none of these strengths are unique to mobile agents, no competing technique shares all six. In other words, a mobile-agent system provides a single general framework in which a wide range of distributed applications can be implemented efficiently and easily. We then present a representative cross-section of current mobile-agent systems.
Copyright © 2002 by the authors.
See also earlier version gray:motivation-tr.