Ontological Support for Living Plan Specification, Execution and Evaluation

In Erik Thomsen, Fred Read, William Duncan, Tatiana Malyuta & Barry Smith (eds.), Semantic Technology in Intelligence, Defense and Security (STIDS), CEUR vol. 1304. pp. 10-17 (2014)
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Maintaining systems of military plans is critical for military effectiveness, but is also challenging. Plans will become obsolete as the world diverges from the assumptions on which they rest. If too many ad hoc changes are made to intermeshed plans, the ensemble may no longer lead to well-synchronized and coordinated operations, resulting in the system of plans becoming itself incoherent. We describe in what follows an Adaptive Planning process that we are developing on behalf of the Air Force Research Laboratory (Rome) with the goal of addressing problems of these sorts through cyclical collaborative plan review and maintenance. The interactions of world state, blue force status and associated plans are too complex for manual adaptive processes, and computer-aided plan review and maintenance is thus indispensable. We argue that appropriate semantic technology can 1) provide richer representation of plan-related data and semantics, 2) allow for flexible, non-disruptive, agile, scalable, and coordinated changes in plans, and 3) support more intelligent analytical querying of plan-related data.

Author Profiles

William Duncan Sharkey
University of Southampton
Barry Smith
University at Buffalo


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