Contact: Dr. Markus Schwehm (
Number of students: Informatik-Diplom 895, Softwaretechnik 170
Department/group: Department of Distributed Systems

Course: Mobile Softwareagenten
Lecturer: Dr. Markus Schwehm (
Duration: 2 hours per week, 1 semester
BASIC CONCEPTS: Classification of software agents, from message passing to mobile agents, agent languages, agent infrastructure, mobile agent systems, agent communication; REVIES OF MOBILE AGENT SYSTEMS: Softnet, M0-Messengers, Tacoma, Agent Tcl, Mole, Aglets, Ara, Telescript, Standardisation efforts and patents; APPLICATIONS: reduction of communication cost, heterogeneous communication, asynchronous communication, dynamic protocols and intelligent data, software deployment, temporary applications, value-added services and load distribution; RESEARCH TOPICS: security issues, control structures, transactional support, performance models
Literature recommended to students?:
Due to the lack of textbooks in the field of mobile agents I recommend a set of original papers (in English): Jim Waldo et al. (1997): 'A Note on Distributed Computing'; The Open Group (1997): 'Mobile Agent Facility Specification'; Frederick Knabe (1996): 'An Overview of Mobile Agent Programming'; Cristian Tschudin (1994): 'An Introduction to the M0 Messenger Language'; Cristian Tschudin (1995): 'Protokollimplementierung mit Kommunikationsboten'; Joachim Baumann et al (1997): 'Mole - Concepts of a Mobile Agent System'; Holger Peine(1997): ' An Introduction to Mobile Agent Programming and the Ara System'; Robert Gray et al. (1997): 'Agent Tcl'; Dag Johannsen et al. (1995): 'An Introduction to the TACOMA Distributed System'; Fritz Hohl (1997): 'Time Limited Blackbox Security'; Tomas Sander at al. (1998): 'On Software Protection via Function Hiding'; Joachim Baumann (1997): 'A Protocol for Orphan Detection and Termination in Mobile Agent Systems'; Kurt Rothermel and Markus Straßer (1997): 'A Protocol for Preserving the Exactly-Once Property of Mobile Agents'; Markus Straßer and Markus Schwehm (1997): 'A Performance Model for Mobile Agent Systems'; Colin G. Harrison et al (1997): 'Mobile Agents: Are they a good idea?'
Part of a regular curriculum?: Yes
Offered by regular staff members?: No
Regularly offered?: Undecided as yet
Status: Ongoing
Average number and education level of students: 10 students
Is material used public?: Yes, a Web Page with Powerpoint presentations and recommended papers for downloading: Plans to publish the leccture notes as a textbook.

Agent-related theses per year: 3/6 master, 3/8 diploma, 4 PhDs planned for next 2/3 years


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