The University of Edinburgh -
Division of Informatics
Forrest Hill & 80 South Bridge

Technical Paper #33

Title:Cars: an Experminet in Real-Time Intelligent Control
Date:Mar 1991
Abstract:This report describes in detail the design and organisation of the CARS system - a first step toward autonomous real-time control of up to four radio-controlled model cars. The complete system will transform plans for car activity expressed as high level constraint and goal descriptions of vehicle activity within a model town, into continuously controlled executions of appropriate trajectories by the models. It is also intended to investigate strategies for dealing with the interaction between vehicles, and with unexpected events. The CARS system in constructed in layers, of which the lowest (continuous control) layer is complete. That layer is described in detail and some of the issues raised by its design are discussed. The design is based on an architectural conjecture that for certain classes of problem a hybrid solution employing a suitable mixture of symbolic reasoning and non-symbolic behaviour is most efficient both in terms of design effort and in terms of effective performance. Preliminary experience with CARS supports this conjecture.

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