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A Knowledge Entry System for Subject Matter Experts

SHAKEN  Principal Investigators:  Vinay K Chaudhri , Peter E. Clark , Paul R. Cohen , Kenneth D. Forbus , Yolanda Gil , Pat Hayes , Bruce Porter

Mailing address:
AI Center
SRI International
333 Ravenswood Avenue
Menlo Park, CA 94025-3493

AIC Program:  Representation and Reasoning

   Project Description

The High Performance Knowledge Bases (HPKB) project demonstrated that the teams of knowledge engineers working together could create knowledge bases (KBs) roughly at the rate of 10K axioms/year for a pre-specified task and evaluation criteria. The HPKB effort showed that it is possible to create KBs by reusing the content of knowledge libraries, and it demonstrated reuse rates ranging from 25% to 100%, depending on the application and the knowledge engineer. It was acknowledged that the ability of a subject matter expert (SME) to directly enter knowledge is essential to improve the KB construction rates. The goal of the Rapid Knowledge Formation (RKF) project is to explore and create innovative techniques for SME’s to directly enter knowledge.

The SRI team is developing a system for direct knowledge entry by SMEs as an integrated team of technology developers. The SRI team includes Boeing, Information Sciences Institute (ISI) at University of Southern California, Northwestern University,Stanford University,University of Massachusetts at Amherst, University of Texas at Austin, University of West Florida, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Pragati Systems.

The claim of this effort is that SMEs, unassisted by AI technologists, can assemble models of mechanisms and processes from components. These models are both declarative and executable, so questions about the mechanisms and processes can be answered by conventional inference methods (for example, theorem proving and taxonomic inference) and by various task-specific methods (for example, simulation, analogical reasoning, and problem-solving methods). A related claim is that relatively few components, perhaps a few thousand, are sufficient for SMEs to assemble models of virtually any mechanism or process. We claim that these components are independent of domain, and that assembly from components instantiated to a domain is a natural way for SMEs to create KB content.

The research in this project exploits and extends previous work in the HPKB project, as well as work in process description languages, qualitative physics, systems dynamics, and simulation. One scientific innovation, and the principal extension to Cyc and the "HPKB standard" of knowledge bases, is the idea of declarative and executable models (DEMs) assembled from components. The declarative aspect of DEMs supports conventional inference, whereas the executable aspect supports reasoning by simulation. For example, the declarative part of a model of aerosols is sufficient to answer questions like, "Will a 5-micron filter afford protection against this aerosol?" while the executable part is necessary to model the dispersal pattern of the aerosol.

The development of libraries of components made available to SMEs via restricted natural language based, graphical, or templatized interfaces is the principal means by which logic-oriented knowledge representation formalisms become accessible to ordinary users. Every modeling technology shows this progression: Spreadsheets, finite-element packages, statistical packages, chemical synthesis software, Macsyma and Mathematica, architectural and CAD packages, graphics and HCI systems, etc., are accessible to ordinary users because they offer libraries of components. As a practical matter, then, it makes sense to provide SMEs with libraries of modeling components. As a scientific matter, we believe we can develop components that represent how humans think about mechanisms and processes.

Some key papers in which which we detail our approach are:

  • Barker, K. and Porter, B. and Clark, P. A Library of Generic Concepts for Composing Knowledge Bases, in First International Conference on Knowledge Capture, 2001. [PDF, Details]

  • Clark, P. and Thompson, J. and Barker, K. and Porter, B. and Chaudhri, V. and Rodriguez, A. and Thomere, J. and Mishra, S. and Gil, Y. and Hayes, P. and Reichherzer, T. Knowledge Entry as the Graphical Assembly of Components, in First International Conference on Knowledge Capture, 2001. [PDF,Details]

  • Barker, K. and Blythe, J. and Borchardt, G. and Chaudhri, V. and Clark, P. and Cohen, P. and Fitzgerald, J. and Forbus, K. and Gil, Y. and Katz, B. and Kim, J. and King, G. and Mishra, S. and Morrison, C. and Murray, K. and Otstott, C. and Porter, B. and Schrag, R. and Uribe, T. and Usher, J. and Yeh, P. A knowledge acquisition tool for course of action analysis, in Proceedings of the Innovative Applications of Artificial Intelligence Conference, 2003. [Details]

We no longer distribute or maintain the SHAKEN system. A large fraction of the code developed under this project is now being used in the AURA system.

   Personnel

Name Title E-mail
Barker, Ken Research Associate, Univ. of Texas-Austin
Blythe, Jim Computer Scientist, USC-ISI
Borchardt, Gary Research Scientist
Chaudhri, Vinay K Program Director
Clark, Peter E. Computer Scientist, Boeing
Cohen, Paul R. Professor, Univ. of Mass.
da Silva, Paulo P Computer Scientist, Stanford Univ.
Eriksen, Michael A Senior Software Engineer
Fikes, Richard E. Professor, Stanford Univ.
Forbus, Kenneth D. Professor, Northwestern Univ.
Garvey, Thomas D Associate Director
Gil, Yolanda Computer Scientist, USC-ISI
Katz, Boris Principal Research Scientist, MIT
Kim, Jihie Computer Scientist
McGuinness, Deborah L. Assoc. Dir. and Sr. Research Scientist, Stanford
McIlraith, Sheila Senior Research Scientist, Stanford Univ.
Mishra, Sunil Computer Scientist
Murray, Ken S Senior Computer Scientist
Porter, Bruce Professor, University of Texas at Austin
Rodriguez, Andres C Computer Scientist
Thomere, Jerome F Computer Scientist
Uribe, Tomas E Computer Scientist

   Software
Active Lisp Pages
ALP is a framework that allows the embedding of Lisp code inside HTML (or XML) pages, for use in server side web scripting.

Capture the Flag
Capture the Flag is a wargaming environment in which human players compete against intelligent adversaries, much as humans now compete against intelligent chess programs. Although the underlying system architecture is very general and has been used to model other phenomena (traffic flow, verbs of motion, and robots), the Capture the Flag environment involves models of conventional ground warfare, including a range of air missions.

Chimaera
Chimaera is a software system that supports users in creating and maintaining distributed ontologies on the web. It supports users in such tasks as loading knowledge bases in differing formats, reorganizing taxonomies, resolving name conflicts, browsing ontologies, editing terms, etc.

Component Library
The Component Library is a library of formal representations of common actions, entities, and modifiers to enable building knowledge bases efficiently.

FREEDIUS
FREEDIUS is a free Geospatial Image Understanding system. It is a portable, open-source successor to SRI’s 3DIUS system (including CME, Image-Calc, RADIUS Common Development Environment, and other Image Understanding tools).

Inference Web
Inference Web (IW) is a framework for explaining Semantic Web reasoning tasks by storing, exchanging, combining, annotating, comparing and rendering proofs and proof fragments provided by reasoners embedded in Semantic Web applications and facilities.

Knowledge Machine
KM is a powerful, frame-based language with clear first-order logic semantics. It contains sophisticated machinery for reasoning, including selection by description, unification, classification, and reasoning about actions using a situations mechanism.

Open Knowledge Base Connectivity
Open Knowledge Base Connectivity (OKBC) is an application programming interface for accessing knowledge bases stored in knowledge representation systems (KRSs). OKBC provides a uniform model of KRSs based on a common conceptualization of classes, individuals, slots, facets, and inheritance. OKBC consists of a set of operations that provide a generic interface to underlying KRSs.

Slick
Slick provides acquisition interfaces that are proactive learners, are able to reason about learning activities and take initiative in participating in the knowledge acquisition process appropriately.

START
The START server answers questions in English about the MIT AI Laboratory, geography, and assorted other topics. START parses incoming questions, matches the queries created from the parse trees against its knowledge base and presents the appropriate information segments to the user.

Structure Mapping Engine
The basic idea of Gentner's structure-mapping theory is that an analogy is a mapping of knowledge from one domain (the base) into another (the target) which conveys that a system of relations which holds among the base objects also holds among the target objects. The Structure-mapping Engine (SME) is a computer simulation of the analogy and similarity comparisons sanctioned by structure-mapping theory.

WordNet
WordNet® is an online lexical reference system whose design is inspired by current psycholinguistic theories of human lexical memory. English nouns, verbs, adjectives and adverbs are organized into synonym sets, each representing one underlying lexical concept. Different relations link the synonym sets.

   Publications

Showing most recent 5 out of 22  [View All]

  • Barker, K. and Blythe, J. and Borchardt, G. and Chaudhri, V. and Clark, P. and Cohen, P. and Fitzgerald, J. and Forbus, K. and Gil, Y. and Katz, B. and Kim, J. and King, G. and Mishra, S. and Morrison, C. and Murray, K. and Otstott, C. and Porter, B. and Schrag, R. and Uribe, T. and Usher, J. and Yeh, P. A knowledge acquisition tool for course of action analysis, in Proceedings of the Innovative Applications of Artificial Intelligence Conference, 2003.  [PDF, Details]

  • Kim, J. and Gil, Y. Proactive Acquisition from Tutoring and Learning Principles, in Proceedings of the AI in Education, 2003.  [PDF, Details]

  • Yeh, P. and Porter, B. and Barker, K. Using Transformations to Improve Semantic Matching, in Proceedings of the Second International Conference on Knowledge Capture, 2003.  [PDF, Details]

  • Clark, P. and Barker, K. and Porter, B. and Chaudhri, V. and Mishra, S. and Thomere, J. . Enabling Domain Experts to Convey Questions to a Machine: a Modified, Template-Based Approach, in Proceedings of Second International Conference on Knowledge Capture, 2003.  [PDF, Details]

  • Kim, J. and Blythe, J. . Supporting Plan Authoring and Analysis, in of the International Conference on Intelligent User Interfaces, 2003.  [PDF, Details]

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