SIWN Abstracts Index
Strategic Decision Support System for Healthcare Institutions (SDSSHI): Need and Design-Considerations
Hans Czap and Lilia Waehlert
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 1/2, November 2011, pp. 1-9
Abstract: The German Healthcare Sector suffers under increasing dynamics of environmental variables influencing the economical situation and also under increasing requirements issued by society. Normal management methods and instruments, which have proven their usefulness in industrial enterprises, in a straight forward manner, cannot be transferred to management of hospitals or other healthcare providers. As a consequence, there is a deficit of approved instruments. Specifically, information systems based on business data showing the operational status, strengths and weaknesses of healthcare providers are not sufficient, neither considering short term decisions nor long lasting strategic ones. This paper concentrates on business issues showing the most urgent needs, the architectural design and the implementation considerations for a number system, called SDSSHI, suited to address the mentioned deficits.
Keywords: Strategic Decision Support System for Healthcare Institutions (SDSSHI), requirements of SDSSHI, architectural design of SDSSHI.
SOA-Based Self-Configurable Flexible Supply Network: Architecture and Major Components
Alexander Smirnov and Nikolay Shilov
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 1/2, November 2011, pp. 10-19
Abstract: Flexible supply networks being one of the results of application of the new knowledge-based ICT, assume complex non-linear relationships between numerous independent participants. This paper presents an approach to self-configuration of flexible supply networks based on the principles of the service-oriented architecture. The approach incorporates such technologies as ontology and context management, profiling, and Web-services. The ontology and context management technologies enable for unification and formalization of the domain description. The profiling simplifies choosing the right resource in a particular situation. The standards of Web-services are used to provide for interoperability between information services. Self-configuration is supported by the developed negotiation protocol.
Keywords: self-configuration, service-oriented architecture, ontology, context, negotiation protocol, constraint network.
Social Networks in Enterprise (Opportunities and Risks)
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 1/2, November 2011, pp. 20-25
Abstract: The most well-known social software applications are weblogs, wikis, social networking sites and instant messaging. Social networking at a high level is described as the convergence of technologies that make it possible for individuals to easily communicate, and share information. But the big question today is not what social networking is, but rather what does it mean for businesses. During the fast growth of social media and software, social networks are forcing companies to increase activities in their traditional CRM systems. These popular websites could be a great approach for companies and customers to improve their communications by applying them in computers and mobile devices. It enables them to communicate each other, to discuss on their problems, on favourite items, and on the quality of products and services. Through the social networks the way, which the company uses in its marketing, is changed. Business can take benefit through applying Social network marketing in order to cooperate with companies to achieve their goals. One of the most important advantages of Internet – based application is creating an interactive contact between stakeholders that enable businesses to get feedback directly from their customers.
In parallel companies can gain benefits through social network in its business: they can achieve a better understanding of the customer needs and then they can build effective relationships with customers. This is the area for the use of customer relationship management (CRM) to intersect with social networks.Although using social network in enterprise is a common concept in business, there is a few numbers of people aware of its effective role in marketing. Social network is a known term but not all the people know what it is exactly and what are the opportunities and risks from it.
Social network can be very advantageous for businesses. Therefore, this paper will intend to find how social network can be used to improve the marketing and to survey how social network can be used effectively in enterprises. The main focus would be on opportunities and risks in companies used social network in their business.
Keywords: Enterprise 2.0, Web 2.0, social network, social software, customer relationship management.
Trading Security for Control Performance in Distributed Robotic Applications
Ruslan Asaula, Tommaso Cucinotta, Gianluca Dini And Luigi Palopoli
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 1/2, November 2011, pp. 26-39
Abstract: Networked embedded and control systems are largely used in factory automation for production and logistics tasks. In this application domain, security has become a prominent issue due to the critical consequences a cyber attack may have in terms of safety and financial losses. Unfortunately security solutions compete against control applications for the often scarce resources of embedded platforms. In this paper, we show how security can be dealt with as one of different Quality of Service dimensions and traded for control performance in an adaptive QoS management scheme. The system is able to respond to increased resource requirements or to changes in the risk level by reconfiguring the application modes and the security modes. We offer an explanatory case study to show how this idea is implemented.
Keywords: Quality of Service, security, distributed control, distributed automation systems
A Control-as-a-Service Approach: Operational Governance for Information Systems in Distributed Environments
Oliver Daute and Stefan Conrad
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 1/2, November 2011, pp. 40-50
Abstract: Controllability is challenging and requires a stronger integration of technical and business issues in a more efficient way. Often essential state information about distributed environments is not available and changes which were made by maintenance, deployments and executions of business scenarios are unknown or unclear to participating instances. This can lead to inconsistencies on functional or data level followed by incorrect results. This, in turn causes production systems to stop. To cope with the complexity these days, this paper is focused on business scenarios and maintenance activities and the interaction with the underlying application layers. The aim is to improve controllability. The more controllable distributed system landscapes are, the higher their reliability, maintainability and evolvability. Special emphasis is placed on operational governance and the introduction of steering mechanisms. With regard to currently discussed advantages of Clouds, as a special form of distributed computing, control mechanisms are strongly needed to keep applications, systems and business scenarios up and running. The use of control services will lead to better approaches for application provision and charging in distributed environments.
Keywords: control, distributed environment, information systems, operational governance.
Method Calls Not Considered Harmful for Agent Interactions
Lars Braubach and Alexander Pokahr
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 1/2, November 2011, pp. 51-69
Abstract: Since the very beginnings of agent technology it is considered a fundamental property that communication between agents is done using asynchronous message passing. One important reason for this assumption is that a method call on an agent would break its autonomy. Conceptually, it would allow an agent to exert control over the behavior of another agent by directly telling it to execute a specific method. Furthermore, more than one agent could call methods on the same agent concurrently possibly leading to state consistency problems. In contrast to agents, in mainstream programming paradigms like object, component or service orientation method calls are the dominant communication means. Being able to define interfaces from method signatures represents an important advantage of those approaches currently not available for agents. In this paper we will argue how it is possible to introduce service interfaces and method calls for agents without breaking their autonomy and endangering their state consistency. To achieve this, concepts from active objects, services and components are brought together. The usefulness of the approach is underlined with an example application from the area of distributed image rendering.
Keywords: agent, agent interaction, method call.
Towards Mechanisms and Formal Models of Self-Adaptive Multi-Agent Organizations
Xinjun Mao, Yuekun Sun, Yi Guo and Junwen Yin
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 1/2, November 2011, pp. 70-82
Abstract: Engineering complex self-adaptive system needs various self-adaptation mechanisms to satisfy different application requirements and their formal models to establish a solid foundation for software engineering approaches. This paper investigates the dynamic and self-adaptation of MAS and proposes two important self-adaptation mechanisms that are abstractions of self-adaptation at different granularities and levels in MAS organization and cover the dynamic in both structure and behavior aspects. A formal model to specify the self-adaptive MAS is also proposed and the operation semantics of self-adaptation mechanisms are defined, with which the dynamic behaviors and adjustments of self-adaptation are precisely specified. The implementation techniques and the corresponding platform based on the mechanism to support the development of self-adaptive MAS are introduced. Lastly a case is studied to illustrate our approach.
Keywords: self-adaptation, multi-agent system, organization.
Combining Sensor Systems: A Differential Behavior Model
Claas Busemann and Daniela Nicklas
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 1/2, November 2011, pp. 83-95
Abstract: The integration of sensors and services into existing systems is still a tedious and time consuming task. Here, we target a special re-engineering problem: since sensors often are proprietary or even embedded systems, their behavior cannot be changed. To interact with sensors, applications have to use their specific conversation protocols. Typically, a sensor middleware deals with that by implementing wrappers and adapters. However, since conversion protocols are often modified, the implementations of adapters and wrappers have to be modified as well. General approaches for protocol conversion are usually either not very flexible, due to static rules, or require the developer to completely describe the source and target protocol, which again is a time consuming task. In this paper we introduce an approach that allows developers to achieve compatibility between services and sensors with frequently changing interfaces and conversation protocols. The approach focuses on the description of differences between conversation protocols without the need of describing the complete communication behavior of the source and target protocol. While the data transformation is realized with state-of-the-art technologies, the communication behavior conversion is based on two distinct models, one for identifying protocols and messages and one for describing protocol differences. This paper also describes the implementation of an model-based converter that is able to interpret these models and thereby to convert protocols automatically to a new representation.
Keywords: protocols, communication behavior, protocol conversion
Gathering Simple Robots With Only Local Communications
Chong Eu Lee and Siew Ann Cheong
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 1/2, November 2011, pp. 96-107
Abstract: We designed a simple algorithm to gather N robots randomly distributed on a plane. The robots have simple programmed actions and limited data processing capabilities. More importantly, they are only capable of local communications within a spatial distance much smaller than the range they are dispersed over. When two robots meet, the one belonging to the smaller group will be converted to the larger group. Using a figure-of-eight search pattern which is progressively enlarged, we show that this simple algorithm gathers robots with an efficiency that increases with the density of robots.
Keywords: convergence problem, gathering problem, intelligent robots, local communication, swarm intelligence.
Neural Networks Application for V-BLAST Detection in Impulsive Noise Channels
Hasan Abu Hilal, Tariq Abu Hilal and Khalid Daqrouq
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 1/2, November 2011, pp. 108-113
Abstract: A large class of physical phenomenon observed in practical wireless systems exhibit non- Gaussian behavior. The performance of many detectors can degrade substantially in the presence of such impulsive ambient noise. In this paper, we use feed forward back propagation neural network model to overcome the effect of the impulsive noise in a CDMA system, the model shows a significant decrease in the Bit Error Rate (BER), for different noise parameters. We present the performance of the V-BLAST detection algorithm under impulsive noise channel characterized by middleton’s Class A model with 16 points constellation Quadrature Amplitude Modulation (16 QAM) in the richly scattered Rayleigh-fading multiple-antenna channel. The performance is described by the mean of Block Error Rate (BLER) of the system. We discuss the performance under different antenna configurations and different noise parameters.
Keywords: VBLAST, neural networks, impulsive noise.
Hardware Implementation of Linear Filtering and Correlation Based on the Discrete Cosine Transform and Its Inverse
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 1/2, November 2011, pp. 114-125
Abstract: The Discrete Cosine Transform (DCT) is one of algorithms that are used for evaluation the Discrete Fourier Transform (DFT). This paper is devoted to creating a special-purpose signal processor for implementation linear filtering and correlation based on the Discrete Cosine Transform (DCT) and its inverse (IDCT). The suggested special-purpose signal processor will be modeled using vector processor architecture to perform vector processing when arithmetic or logical operations are applied to vector.
Keywords: correlation, discrete cosine transform, inverse discrete cosine transform, linear filtering, vector processor architecture.
A Framework for Agent-Enabled Cooperative Intelligent DSS
Bakhta Nachet and Abdelkader Adla
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 1/2, November 2011, pp. 126-139
Abstract: In this paper, we propose to use Multi-Agents Systems (MAS) to model Cooperative Decision Support Systems (DSS). These systems support the collaboration of two agents (the decision-maker (the user) and the machine) to solve jointly a problem of decision making, enabling to take advantage of the capacities of both the decision-maker and the machine. The novel idea introduced in this work is the modelling of Cooperative DSS using agent technology by coupling two MAS, the first is reactive and the latter is cognitive or deliberative. The resulting system is designed to support operators, as decision-makers during contingencies in which the operators using the system should be able to: gather information about the incident location; access databases related to the incident; activate predictive modelling programs; support analyses of the operator, and monitor the progress of the situation and action execution. A simple scenario is given, to illustrate the feasibility of our proposal
Keywords: multi-agent system (MAS), decision support system (DSS), cooperative DSS, intelligent agents, hybrid MAS
A Task-Based Architecture for Autonomic Body Sensor Networks
Stefano Galzarano, Giancarlo Fortino and Antonio Liotta
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 1/2, November 2011, pp. 140-151
Abstract: This paper proposes an architecture conceived for supporting rapid design and implementation of Wireless Body Sensor Network (WBSN) applications having autonomic characteristics. WBSNs represent the most suitable systems for monitoring and controlling physical and biochemical parameters on the human body, and thus supporting high-impact applications in a variety of human-centered domains The effectiveness of WBSN applications is a critical issue since their correctness and efficiency have to be assured not only at design/implementation time but notably at execution time. The autonomic computing paradigm can perfectly meet the critical requirements of WBSN applications such as fault tolerance, adaptability, and reliability, due to its fundamental self-* properties. In particular, our solution is based on the SPINE2 framework and its important distinctive feature is an architecture for guaranteeing the separation of concerns between the user-defined application logic and the autonomic-related operations. Our proposal is finally exemplified through a case study concerning the development of an autonomic application for human activity monitoring.
Keywords: autonomic computing, high-level programming frameworks, wireless body sensor networks, in-node signal processing
Novel Methods To Locate Emergent Behaviors in Cellular Automata and Their Applications
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 1/2, November 2011, pp. 152-171
Abstract: This paper reviews recent advances in massively parallel, nature inspired computer architectures; namely, cellular nonlinear networks with an emphasis on binary cellular automata as special cases. It focuses on novel methods to characterize emergence as a computationally meaningful property and on certain systematic methods to “program” cellular computers, i.e., to find the defining parameters of the cells such that the global dynamics of the interconnected cells fits into a desired behavior with a certain applicative purpose. Such behaviors range from simple equilibrium dynamics that can be used for filtering, feature extraction and classification, and more complicated dynamics for pattern and texture generation or pseudo-random signal production with applications in communications and cryptography. Emphasis will be given on a novel probabilistic method to characterize cellular automata dynamics without effectively simulating them. Such methods, based on uncertainty spread, allow a fast characterization of emergent dynamics and permit to determine cell structure or “genes”, given the specification of a desired emergent behavior.
Keywords: cellular nonlinear network, cellular automata, inverse problems, emergent computation, nonlinear dynamics
Agreeing on and Controlling Business Service Levels in Service-Oriented Architectures
B. Heckmann, A. D. Phippen, R. Moore and C. Wentzel
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 3/4, December 2011, pp. 173-178
Abstract: This paper introduces Business Service Levels (BSLs) as a generalised concept to agree on feasibility and workload of business processes hosted in service-oriented architectures. BSLs loosen the coupling between technical service provision and business service consumption by offering an alternative to technical service level agreements. To controll the BSL compliance at runtime an technical approach is introduced and implemented as proof-of-concept. It retrieves state or load information from a technical monitoring system and technical topology information from a CMDB. Based on those, this component estimates a business process’s feasibility and workload. To maintain the contracted BSLs it actively controlls the request flow towards the services.
Keywords: availability, business, monitoring, reliability, services.
Protecting the Virtual Economy in MMOGs Using a Cheating Detection Mechanism
Felipe L. Severino, Carlos E. B. Bezerra and Cláudio F. R. Geyer
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 3/4, December 2011, pp. 179-191
Abstract: In the past few years Massively Multiplayer Online Games (MMOGs) grew in both number of players and complexity of the virtual world. As the number of players increases, it becomes even more important to protect the virtual economy from cheaters, since some cheats can potentially affect every player in the game. Cheating becomes a serious problem when using unreliable resources, such as volunteer computers. This paper proposes a cheating detection mechanism that restrains the cheating impact to a small portion of the game state by validating each player’s state as he moves across the virtual world.
Keywords: massively multiplayer online games, MMOG, cheating, virtual economy.
Overview of Quality Assurance Methods for the Analysis and Modeling of Medical Processes
M. N. Lakhoua and S. Laifi
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 3/4, December 2011, pp. 192-203
Abstract: The complexity of hospital systems and the diversity of medical facilities require a structured methodology of analysis and modeling. In fact, the majority of the methods in use concentrate on the treatment of information and they don’t permit to get perceptions and correct understandings of the internal working of these systems. To answer to this problem, the proposed gait is based on the exploitation of a systemic approach for the representation of hospital system in view of its analysis and modeling. In this article, we present briefly the famous methods of analysis and modeling in use for the quality assurance of the medical framework.
Keywords: medical process, quality assurance, analysis and modelling.
Learning of Keepaway Task for RoboCup Soccer Agent Based on Fuzzy Reinforcement Learning
Toru Sawa and Toshihiko Watanabe
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 3/4, December 2011, pp. 204-221
Abstract: Behavior learning or skill acquisition is one of the most important issues of reinforcement learning schemes, in order to realize an intelligent agent. Generally, simple tasks such as a goal exploration can be easily acquired by the reinforcement learning techniques, as many simulation studies are demonstrated. However, complicated tasks such as behaviors in sports like soccer are difficult to acquire substantially. It is caused by difficulties of objective modeling and the multi-agent environment. In this study, we developed a behavior acquisition system for Keepaway task of 2-D RoboCup soccer agent based on the fuzzy reinforcement learning. We showed that the Fuzzy Q-Learning approach is promising to acquire behavior rules compared with Fuzzy Sarsa and Crisp Q-Learning, through numerical experiments. We discussed the issues of acquisition for behavior rules in terms of improvement of the learning performance.
Keywords: reinforcement learning, RoboCup soccer, fuzzy system, fuzzy Q-learning, fuzzy Sarsa.
Vitae System Based Agent Modeling and Simulation of Rescuer-Rescuee Communication Process under Survivability-Critical States in Underground Flooding
Eishiro Higo and Norio Okada
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 3/4, December 2011, pp. 222-237
Abstract: The process of evacuation and rescuing in underground flooding has been modeled, simulated and analyzed based on the Vitae System Model. Based on our previous work, some extensions have been made to deal with the rescuer-rescuee communication process. To rescue an evacuee (rescuee), a rescuer faces three uncertainties (i) future hazard level, (ii) local environmental problem around a rescuee and (iii) a rescuee’s condition. Considering (ii) and (iii), we have defined both a rescuer’s and a rescuee’s time limits and, by using these limits, we have clarified the difficulties of the rescuer-rescuee communication process. The more severe condition a rescuee is in, the lesser chance for a rescuer to make contact with a rescuee. The uncertainty of a rescuee’s condition requires a margin for the rescue process to insure a rescuer’s life.
Keywords: underground flooding; evacuation and rescue process; Vitae system model; agent modeling; survivability-critical states.
Dynamic Service Matching in WS-BPEL with SPARQL
Neil Paiva Tizzo, Juan Manuel Adán-Coello and Eleri Cardozo
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 3/4, December 2011, pp. 238-254
Abstract: The dynamic matching of Web services must be able to adapt to a changing environment as services are permanently inserted, removed and modified. However, most composition languages do not support such dynamic matching, or support it in a restrict sense, as in WS-BPEL. In this work we employ available technologies, especially the WS-BPEL and SPARQL languages, in order to develop a model for the dynamic matching of Web services. In this model the user expresses the service requirements in the form of a query that will be resolved at runtime. This guarantees the adaption of the system − in a changing environment − without requiring to refactor the entire composition. The restrictions of such a system are listed. An implementation of the model and a case study are reported as well.
Keywords: semantic web services, service composition, service mathcing, service selecting, SPARQL, WS-BPEL.
On Limit Distribution Efficiency in BitTorrent-like Systems
Hong Tang, Huiyun Zhu and Huaglory Tianfield
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 3/4, December 2011, pp. 255-263
Abstract: This paper studies the file distribution efficiency of BitTorrent-like file sharing transport protocol, which is very popular in Peer-to-Peer systems. To do this, we distinguish three cases in terms of the different bandwidths in seeds and leechers. Under each case, with the piece distribution rules refined, we analyze the file distribution process in a BitTorrent system and formulate the minimum total time of file distribution, which represents the limit of distribution efficiency. Our analysis shows that theoretically speaking gaps exist between the normal and the limit distribution efficiencies, which implies theoretical potentials to which distribution efficiency in BitTorrent-like systems can be improved
Keywords: BitTorrent, file distribution efficiency, peer-to-peer system, file sharing protocol.
Dynamic Access Control in Cloud Services
Vladimir Zaborovsky, Alexey Lukashin, Sergey Kupreenko and Vladimir Mulukha
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 3/4, December 2011, pp. 264-277
Abstract: Cloud computing refers to software services that are offered through the Internet. The problems of security of such services are becoming particularly important due to intricacy structure and dynamic nature of distributed cloud environment. Complication of cloud platforms require more functionality from security devices and the need to their on-line configuration in accordance to the current state of network environment through which users can gain access to information services. The paper proposes a specialized firewall solution for implementing access control using functionality of hypervisors, and describes dynamic access model based on virtual connections management with mechanism of traffic filtering in transparent also called "stealth" mode. Security appliance (firewall) in this mode is not visible to other participants (components) of network interactions, allowing it to implement the access policy but remains invulnerable to cyber crooks.
Keywords: security, cloud computing, dynamic access control, firewall, virtualization, netgraph, hypervisor, Xen
Software Rejuvenation in Eucalyptus Cloud Computing Infrastructure: A Hybrid Method Based on Multiple Thresholds and Time Series Prediction
Rubens Matos, Jean Araujo, Paulo Maciel, F. Vieira De Souza, Rivalino Matias and Kishor Trivedi
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 3/4, December 2011, pp. 278-294
Abstract: The need for reliability and availability has increased in modern applications, in order to handle rapidly growing demands while providing uninterrupted service. Cloud computing systems fundamentally provide access to large pools of data and computational resources through a variety of interfaces, similarly to existing grid and HPC resource management and programming systems. This work presents an approach that uses time series to schedule rejuvenation, so as to reduce the downtime by predicting the proper moment to perform the rejuvenation. We show the results of our approach through experiments using the Eucalyptus cloud computing framework.
Keywords: software aging and rejuvenation; cloud computing; dependability analysis, time series.
Refining the OOPP into Method of Representation of the Information by Objectives
M. N. Lakhoua and T. Ben Jouida
International Transactions on Systems Science and Applications, Vol. 7, No. 3/4, December 2011, pp. 295-303
Abstract: This paper presents the Objectives Oriented Project Planning method (OOPP) and how to refine it into Method of Representation of the Information by Objectives (MRIO). In fact, a Method of Informational Analysis by Objectives (MIAO) was defined in order to elaborate an information matrix permitting to analyze the informational exchange process between the activities of a project and to determine the relations between these activities. In order to become the exploitation of the information matrix more comfortable, we define the MRIO inspiring of the SADT method (Structured Analysis Design Technique) and we define its tools.
Keywords: information system, planning, OOPP, MRIO.
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