Agents in Bad Münstereifel

Katharina Nuß

project report

Decisions of politicians and companies can have a lot of impact on the environment that we live in. Therefore it is important that decisions regarding our living environment are thought through carefully and ultimately benefit all. It would be best if the decision makers tested their ideas before making them public, however, how should they determine whether their idea is good or bad? It would be good to ask those that would be affected, but this could be a huge undertaking and it would result in disclosure of the idea.

Therefore it would be better to ask a small group of people that form a representative cross section of society. However, only very few decision makers have access to such "agents".

I had the idea of creating "software agents" that form a representative cross section of society and live in a virtual space that resembles reality as much as possible. I have programmed such software agents in delphi. While I am happy with my software, I worry that humans might be much more intelligent than a stupid software agent. Therefore I thought that selected people could be agents and they could be easily asked by email. I discussed this with the mayor and tested the idea using the teachers of St. Michael-Gymnasium as agents, however, not all agents responded. Thus, software agents may be less intelligent than email agents, however, they are a lot more reliable.

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