Agent Based Computing
Question 1:  I am writing to request the PIP for the above referenced BAA.
Answer 1:  The PIP can be obtained from the following web site:  http://www.darpa.mil/iso/ABC/BAA0007PIP.htm

Question 2:  The BAA does not require abstract submission for DAML Integration and  Transition.   However, if a proposer voluntarily submits an abstract for this area, will DARPA review it and provide feedback and critique?
Answer 2:Yes, for the purposes of this BAA, abstracts are not required for DAML Integration and Transition. As described in the PIP, proposal abstracts  shall be prepared for all DAML and TASK areas of interest except the DAML Integration and Transition area. However, if proposers wish to voluntarily submit an abstract, DARPA will provide feedback on the technical merits.

Question 3:  In the PIP BAA 00-07 under section VI. PROPOSAL PREPARATION, Proposal Abstract and Proposal Preparation and Delivery it states:  "Proposal abstracts shall be prepared for all DAML and TASK areas of  interest except the DAML Integration and Transition area."  Does this mean that if we are submitting a proposal in the areas of DAML Integration and Transition, we do NOT need to submit an abstract in advance of submitting the Proposal in February?
Answer 3:  Yes, for the purposes of this BAA, abstracts are not required for DAML Integration and Transition. As described in the PIP, proposal abstracts  shall be prepared for all DAML and TASK areas of interest except the DAML Integration and Transition area. However, if proposers wish to voluntarily submit an abstract, DARPA will provide feedback on the technical merits.

Question 4: We are considering using a professor at the University of Winnipeg as a subcontractor for a proposal in response to BAA 00-07.  He is a Canadian citizen.  Does DARPA have any restrictions or requirements related to the use of Canadian citizens and/or Canadian educational institutions?
Answer 4: There is no policy that would preclude Canadian citizens or any other foreign entities from participating on proposal teams; however, security and export control issues must be addressed to ensure any access to information will not be compromised.

Question 5:  In the first paragraph under "Mission and Vision"  what is a "mathematically validated domain model"? Where can I get one?  We would like to test our system against such a model.
Answer 5:  One of the key goals of the TASK program will be to generate models of domains, and to then use empirical or other means to test predictions against such a model.  This is what we mean by "mathematically-validated domain model."  Such models exist for many domains, although not very many (if any) for complex, dynamic information domains - which is the area of TASK's focus.  As such, developing these domains will be a program goal, and not something that can be provided prior to program initiation.

Question 6:  The BAA states that "Within 30 days after receipt of the proposal abstract, DARPA will provide written feedback on the likelihood of a full proposal being requested".  Does this mean that only the authors of approved abstracts will be asked to write proposals?  Are abstracts required to submit a proposal?
Answer 6:  All proposers are encouraged to submit abstracts, however, proposals will be accepted if no abstract is submitted. DARPA will provide abstract feedback which could help you determine whether to submit a full proposal and help you with the nature of the submission.  Prospective offerors are not precluded from submitting proposals.

Question 7:  The DAML tasks do not appear to be independent.  For example, knowledge of the DAML Mark-up tool is required to perform on the DAML Agent Component Development task.  Without this knowledge a proposal/abstract would have to make assumptions on DAML that might not be accurate.  Is the intent that the DAML and TASK technical topics are all independent?
Answer 7:  DAML contracts are expected to be of two major types: 1) component development contracts, which focus on the design, implementation, and/or evaluation of DAML tools, and 2) integration contracts, aimed at bringing together these components and transitioning the results. Component contractors should propose research in one or more of the following topic areas: DAML Ontology- and Markup-Tool Development; DAML-Agent Component Development; and DAML Language/Tool Evaluation. All DAML contractors will be expected to participate in language development and source markup. TASK proposals should stress one or more of the following topic areas: Agent Systems modeling; Experiment Design/Collection/Analysis; and Well Founded Agent Creation Tools. Proposers should consider these topic areas as independent of each other, but may propose research in one or more topic areas. In addition, as stated in the PIP, all contractors will be expected to join in the language design effort, and thus the details of DAML will
evolve based on use within the program.

Question 8:  What is the relationship between the DAML Mark-up Language Tool Development and the TASK Well Founded Agent Creation Tools technical tasks.  Are they completely independent?  If not, what is their overlap?
Answer 8:  DAML Markup-Tool Development and TASK Well Founded Agent Creation Tools are independent topic areas.

Question 9:  DAML language/tool evaluation could be seen as a required component of each markup-tool and agent component development effort; each team is required to evaluate their contribution. Alternatively, or additionally, the DAML language/tool evaluation may be undertaken by an independent contractor not directly involved in component development. Lastly, DAML language/tool evaluation could be seen as a necessary component in the integration and transition tasks. Does the program expect a need for independent evaluation?  Is the combination of  the language/tool evaluation with the integration and transition tasks appropriate for this effort?
Answer 9:  Component bidders are expected to explain how they will evaluate the tools they build -- by demonstration, experimentation, formal analysis, etc.  Specialized components aimed explicitly at the evaluation of other DAML-based tools (for example, a tool that could be used for evaluating the efficacy of the interactive use of a DAML-enhanced search tool) can also be proposed for DAML/tool evaluation.  The Integration and Transition contractor(s) will be expected to provide the framework for the overall evaluation of integrated component sets developed by the component developers and integrated as part of the integration and transition activities.

Question 10:  What level of end-to-end architectural definition is required in the DAML component development tasks, and integration and transition tasks? Will the I&T contractor be expected to coordinate and develop an end-to-end architectural definition, perhaps realized as a system design document? Will the component development teams be expected to deliver production-quality code ready for deployment, or will the I&T contractor be expected to perform required code hardening?
Answer 10:  The development of an end-to-end architecture is antithetical to the stated goal of this project, which is to develop a wide range of new tools and techniques demonstrating the many things that can be done with explicit semantics as represented in the DAML language.  As an example, consider the wide number of approaches and uses of XML currently being envisioned -- the common factor is the XML markup, not some underlying architecture.
Similarly, DAML-agent tools may be deployable over networks, might be standalone applications, or may be integrated into larger efforts.  In short, since DAML is explicitly meant to be a web-based language, the necessary heterogeneity of the web is expected to be reflected in the heterogeneity of languages, tools, and techniques developed under DAML.    With respect to the issue of hardening, we expect the DAML components to result in research prototypes or similar level tools. The Integration and Transition contractor will be expected to help with the hardening and deployment of some of these tools, although other transition mechanisms will also be explored.  We expect one end result of this program will be the deployment of some DAML-based tools on the government's Intelink (the "secret internet").

Question 11:  I want to verify my interpretation of section A.2.1.2 of the PIP,   the section titled "DAML Agent Component Development".  I interpret this section to be requesting application tools that "use" DAML as opposed to requesting tools for building such applications.  The table above it seems to support my interpretation, but the A.2.1.2 text seems a bit ambiguous.  Is my interpretation correct?
Answer 11:  Your interpretation is correct. DAML - Agent Component Development task is defined as the design, implementation and testing of agent-based tools that demonstrate novel capabilities enabled by the presence of DAML markup on sources (Application tools that use DAML).

Question 12:  In evaluating potential teammates and strategies, I was wondering if you would consider it a conflict of interest to have a team consisting of both language/tool builders (DAML topics 1 and 2) and language/tool evaluators (topic 3)?  That is, can we propose to do topic 1 or 2 and also do topic 3?
Answer 12:   There is no conflict of interest to have a team consisting of both language/tool builders and language/tool evaluators.

Question 13:   In preparation for responding to the BAA, we had the following additional question: As many of the standards and ongoing research
references cited for DAML contain international components and contributions, is international participation as subcontractors on unclassified portions of the program encouraged or permitted?
Answer 13:  There is no policy that would preclude foreign citizens or entities from participating on proposal teams; however, security and export control issues must be addressed to ensure any access to information will not be compromised.

Question 14:   In evaluating potential teammates and strategies, I was wondering if you would consider it a conflict of interest to have a team consisting of both language/tool builders (DAML topics 1 and 2) and language/tool evaluators (topic 3)?  That is, can we propose to do topic 1 or 2 and also
do topic 3?
Answer14:  There is no conflict of interest to have a team consisting of both language/tool builders and language/tool evaluators.

Question 15: Does "submitted by" mean postmarked by or received by?  Because of the holiday, and because many universities are closed for several days at Thanksgiving, there is a substantial difference between requiring abstracts to be postmarked by "1600 local, 29 November 1999" and requiring that they be received at DARPA then (which might necessitate submission nearly a week earlier).
Answer 15:  An original and three (3) hard copies of the proposal abstract must be received at  DARPA/ISO, 3701 North Fairfax Drive, Arlington, VA 22203-1714 (Attn.: BAA 00-07) on or before 4:00 p.m., local time, Monday, 29 November 1999. Proposal abstracts received after this time and date will not be reviewed.

Question 16: If proposer responds to more than one topic under DAML or TASK, might DARPA accept to fund one or more topic responses and not fund others in the same proposal?

Question 17:  While it is understood that DARPA does not want a continuous stream of abstracts up to the Proposal deadline, given that abstracts are not absolutely required (see FAQ #6) and it is to DARPA's benefit to have early insight into and provide feedback for the ideas of prospective proposers, is the abstract submission deadline absolute or can additional abstracts be submitted for some "reasonable" time beyond 1600 local, 29 November 1999?

Question 18:  Ontology creation and the alignment or closer interactions of independently created ontologies is of obvious importance for the use of DAML.  To what extent is ontology work of interest for the current BAA or is that work seen as part of other efforts?  If part of other efforts, to what extent are the results of such ontology efforts expected to be incorporated into this program?
Answer 18:  DAML components may support any or all parts of the life cycle of DAML marked-up components, from creation through update/versioning. However, as specified in the PIP (section A.2), we are soliciting "component development contracts, which focus on the design, implementation, and/or evaluation of DAML tools." Thus, for this and all other aspects of ontological research, DAML requests the development of components, not of theoretical results.

Question 19:  Per Section A.2.3, the creation of the DAML syntax appears to be the joint responsibility of all participants.  Is it envisioned that participants who have been developing such markup will comprise a core working group to bring forward some unified version of the existing efforts?  If different agent approaches require radically different markup, how is this difference expected to be resolved? Especially at an early stage of the project, this may impact the amount of travel to be included in the budget.
Answer 19:  It is envisioned that there will exist a working group to develop the language, and all PIs will be required to participate.  In addition, there
may be people from other, non-funded, organizations who also participate.  Differences will be resolved by the sorts of consensual processes usually
used in standardization  and other community efforts.

Question 20: The format instructions require 1.5 or double-spaced text.  Is this spacing also required for text in tables or is 12 pt, single-spaced text acceptable in tables?
Answer 20:  Yes, 12 pt, single-spaced text is acceptable in tables.

Comment 21:  Publicly available PowerPoint presentations relating to the DAML and TASK programs can be found at the DARPA/ISO web site http://dtsn.darpa.mil/iso/index2.asp?mode=9 for DAML and TASK.

Question 22:  The text of the PIP specifies that base proposals should be limited to three years, with options for the contract out years.  However, the template for the cost summary table suggests that base efforts need to be over by the end of GFY 2002, meaning that the maximum period for the base effort is 28 months (given a 6/1/00 start date).  Is the correct maximum base proposal period 36 months, or 28 months?
Answer 22:  According to the PIP:  "...,the total length of the technical effort is estimated to be 52 months (28 months base, 24 months options for the out years) from June 2000 through September 2004. Base proposals for individual efforts should be limited to 3 years, optional tasks or options for the out years may be included."  For the base period: given a start date of June 1, 2000 and an end date of September 30, 2002, the base period of performance would be 28 months.

Question 23: Regarding section A.2.3 ("Additional Responsibilities"), and FAQ #19, can DARPA provide more guidance on whether and how proposers should estimate effort and costs for the two required tasks, especially "involve[ment] in the design and evolution of the DARPA Agent Markup Language?" E.g., "language design meetings if any will be part of one or more of the workshops mentioned earlier", whether they should be separate items in the S.O.W., etc.
Answer 23:  Costs should be proposed in accordance with the offeror's best estimate of the level of effort required to support the tasks sketched out in section A.2.3.

Question 24:  In the TASK PIP in section B.2 it says "The emphasis of TASK is on information, rather than physical agents."  We interpret this to mean that agents should not be proposed, but  those proposing "Creation Tools" may propose software tools for the creation of agents.  Is this a correct interpretation?
Answer 24:  Although our reference to "information, rather than physical agents" was meant to emphasize software agents over robots, it is also the case that the creation tools explicitly refer to software tools.
As outlined in the PIP: "The key research goals of TASK will focus on mathematical modeling and the formal or large-scale experimental analysis of modern agent-based information systems." TASK should emphasize the modeling and analysis of agent-based systems. These goals will be achieved through the following topic areas as defined by the PIP: Agent Systems Modeling; Experiment Design/Collection/Analysis; and Well Founded Agent Creation Tools.
Further definition in the PIP is as follows: "Well founded Agent Creation Tools - Techniques for the creation of agents and/or multi-agent systems that are amenable to formal modeling, scaling analyses, or other rigorous analysis. Techniques that explore non-traditional computing  'metaphors' (biology, statistical physics, etc.) for creation of agents or agent societies." TASK should include techniques (software tools) for the creation of agents.

Question 25:  It has been requested that personnel other than the points of contact listed in the abstract be cc'd on email evaluations of the proposals.
Answer 25:  Evaluation of proposal abstracts will be returned by hard copy letters to the primary technical point of contact listed on the proposal abstract.

Comment 26:  "Responses to the proposal abstracts have been mailed December 22nd to the Technical Points of Contact."

Question 27:  I want to verify the time periods we should use in setting up our budgets.
I. A pure GAY budget for 28 month base period would, I think, be as follows:
FY 1 06/01/00 - 9/30/00
FY 2 10/01/00 - 9/30/01
FY 3 10/01/01 - 9/30/02

II. But in looking at the FAQ for BAA 0015, I see this alternative
FY 1 06/01/00 - 12/31/00
FY 2 01/01/01 - 12/31/01
FY 3 01/01/02 - 9/30/02
Am I correct in assuming that case I is what we should use?
Answer 27:  Case #I would be correct for a 28 month base period based upon the anticipated award date for this solicitation as GFY 2000 3Q.

Comment 28:  As stated in the PIP, the Government intends to use Schafer Corporation and MITRE personnel as special resources to assist with the logistics of administering proposal evaluation and to provide advice on specific technical areas.  Personnel of these contractors are restricted by
their contracts from disclosing proposal information for any purpose other than these administrative or advisory tasks.  Contractor personnel are required to sign Organizational Conflict of Interest Non-Disclosure Agreements (OCI/NDA).  In addition to the contractors noted above, the government intends to use Institute for Defense Analysis (IDA) personnel in this same capacity. IDA personnel will be restricted in exactly the same
fashion as detailed above.

Question 29:  Please clarify the resulting contract type contemplated for this BAA.  Is it CPFF or Cost Sharing-No Fee?  The reference to cost sharing is noted in the instructions for VOLUME II, last sentence of paragraph 2.
Answer 29:  The contract type is dependent upon the method of contracting proposed by the offeror and contract negotiations between the BAA agent and the organization awarded the contract.  The most common type of contract for a solicitation of this nature is CPFF.

Question 30:  Our company is submitting a proposal for this solicitation and I was just wondering about the Cost Proposal.  It says in your outline for this solicitation that "Cost Proposals have no page-length limitations; however, offerors are requested to keep cost proposals to 30 pages as a goal."  I'm just not sure of the contents to submit to actually make it this long.  This is my first BAA cost proposal and I would like as much information about it as possible.
Answer 30:  The size of the cost proposal varies greatly based on the nature of the bidder and/or the size and type of the proposed contract.  Please refer to the PIP, VOLUME II: Cost Proposal, for information pertaining to the content of the Cost Proposal. Each section outlined in the PIP should be adequately addressed in the Cost Proposal, regardless of the 30 page goal.

Question 31:  In order to submit a proposal, does the company need to have a Cage Code?  What is a Cage Code?
Answer 31:  A Commercial and Government entity (CAGE) code is a code assigned by the Defense Logistics Information Service (DLIS) to identify a commercial or Government entity. If the Offeror does not have a CAGE code, it may ask the Contracting Officer to request one from DLIS.  Proposals may be submitted without CAGE codes; however, awards cannot be made without CAGE codes.

Question 32:  What is a Contractor Establishment Code?
Answer 32:  The Contractor Establishment Code (CEC), or Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number is a nine digit number assigned by Dun and Bradstreet Information Services to an establishment.  It is the Contractor Identification Number for Federal contractors.

Question 33:  Does a subcontractors hourly billing rate have a maximum limit?
Answer 33:  No.

Question 34: Please explain the Options for me for this proposal.  What are Options 2 and Options N?  What are the time frames for these Options?
Answer 34: The anticipated period of performance for this solicitation is estimated to be 52 months from June 2000 through September 2004. Base
proposals for individual efforts should be limited to 3 Government fiscal years starting in 3Q GFY 2000 (28 months). Optional tasks or options for the
out years may be proposed. There is no limit to the optional tasks that may be proposed, therefore Option N refers to the variable number of options for the out years of this solicitation.

Question 35:  Is a Performance Bonus allowed and if so, what is the maximum percentage?  How is it written into the Cost Proposal?  Is there an example or sample I can refer to?
Answer 35:  A performance bonus is dependent upon the type of contract awarded. Typically, DARPA does not award performance bonus type contracts.

Comment 36:  The second sentence in the answer to FAQ question 9 was written in error. It has been corrected and now reads as follows:  Specialized components aimed explicitly at the evaluation of other DAML-based tools (for example, a tool that could be used for evaluating the efficacy of the interactive use of a DAML-enhanced search tool) can also be proposed for DAML/tool evaluation.

Question 37:  In the PIP,VI Proposal Preparation, Proposal, Volume 1,  you describe section G as "A graphic illustration which depicts major milestones of the research plan described in section F..."  Section F is Experimentation and Integration and is not required for TASK or DAML
Component proposals.  Please clarify.
Answer 37:  The PIP was written in error and will be modified. Section G should read:  "Schedule and Milestones:  (Limit: 1 page) A graphic illustration which depicts major milestones of the research plan arrayed against the proposed time and cost estimates.  Each milestone depicted shall have a corresponding Work Breakdown Structure describing proposed cost and effort in the proposed Statement of Work."

Question 38:   In the PIP,VI Proposal Preparation, Proposal, Volume 1, section J, you state:  "For university researchers it will be sufficient to simply
so state."  Does this mean that a section J consisting solely of the statement "The personnel in this proposal are all university researchers." will be deemed responsive?  If not, please clarify.
Answer 38:  Yes, in Volume I, section J of the proposal simply state that the personnel in this proposal consist of university researchers.

Question 39:  It is not clear from the PIP whether an electronic copy of the cost volume (Volume II:Cost Proposal) is required or not. In the past,
electronic copies were usually required only for Volume I: Technical Proposal.  If in fact cost proposals are required to be sent in electronic form also,
are there any acceptable formats other than Microsoft Word or (e.g., Excel Spreadsheet)?
 Answer 39:  Yes, Volume II: Cost Proposal should be included in the electronic copy of the proposal.  The required format is MS Word 97 or Adobe Portable Document Format (.pdf).

Question 40:  Under "A. Budget Summary" there is a part 1 and part 2.  Part 1 asks for a detailed breakdown by gov't fiscal year.  Is it correct to prepare one budget (by fiscal yr.) for the whole project?  Since I am not breaking down the budget by task here, where would I list the labor hours (or in our case, percentage effort) for the tasks?
In part 2, I would list a more general breakdown by task such as this:
GFY2000  GFY2001     GFY2002     GFY2003    GFY2004
Task 1     (title)
Salaries              $20,000          etc.
Benefits                 5,000
Other direct costs   5,000
Indirect costs        18,000
Total Cost        $48,000

Task 2     etc.
Answer 40:  In part 1 (detailed breakdown of cost by Government fiscal year), labor hours by labor category/tasks and subtasks must be listed.  In part 2, costs should be broken down by task/sub-task for each Government fiscal year.

Question 41:  I understand the 28 month base period, but is it acceptable for the option to be proposed during this same 28-mo. period (and extending beyond), or should it start at the end of the base period (10/01/02)?
Answer 41: Yes, it is acceptable to propose an option during the base period.

Question 42:  Do the proprietary claims that a proposer is being asked to summarize (or to state that there are none) relate to background intellectual property  in which the gov't has no rights, such as patents covering inventions not  funded by the gov't and/or technical data/computer software funded at  private expense, and that will not be delivered to the gov't, or is this paragraph directed solely to whether there exists technical data and/or computer software previously developed at private expense that will be included in a deliverable and delivered with less than unlimited rights?
Answer 42:  Any data submitted in the proposal should be clearly marked to identify the proprietary claims whether it relates to limited rights, unlimited rights, or Government Purpose License rights.

Question 43:  Does DFARS 252.227-7028 (JUN 1995) TECHNICAL DATA OR COMPUTER SOFTWARE PREVIOUSLY DELIVERED TO THE GOVERNMENT apply if we do not intend to deliver  with other than unlimited rights any documents or other media incorporating  technical data or  computer software that are identical or substantially similar to documents or media that we may have produced and/or delivered under another government contract?  Put another way, we may want to include as part of a deliverable technical data that was developed under another US Gov't contract; if we do not intend to deliver the deliverable with less than unlimited rights, is the DFARS -7028 clause applicable?
Answer 43:  The inclusion of DFARS 252.227-7028 (JUN 1995) TECHNICAL DATA OR COMPUTER SOFTWARE in any resultant contract will depend upon the result of negotiations and the technical data that would be applicable to the clause.  Should you elect to include technical data that was developed under a prior government contract, the rights negotiated under that contract would apply.

Question 44:  If I received a letter that indicated my proposal was technically acceptable but insufficient funds were available, should I resubmit or will it remain in consideration?  Can I receive comments regarding the proposal that might help me improve it?
Answer 44:  Proposals deemed technically acceptable but for which insufficient funds were available will be retained for 1 year beyond the revised BAA closure date (Nov, 2000). You may be contacted for further discussions regarding leading to potential contract award at any time during that period.  There is no need to resubmit under this BAA and a resubmittal will not be re-evaluated.  Comments beyond a brief discussion of tasks that might be emphasized should your proposal eventually be funded may be available informally from the Program Manager.  Such discussion by the Program Manager cannot provide you information for resubmission or submission of an alternative proposal.

Question 45:  What are the implications of the reopening of the BAA for proposals that have not yet received feedback?  Should we resubmit, or assume that current proposals are still under consideration?
Answer 45:  There are no implications for those who have not received feedback.  The decision to reopen the BAA was based on other considerations.  Decisions regarding those proposals submitted prior to February 7th are not deferred and have been made.  Letters to all proposers are in the mail and should be received within a week.

Question 46:  I have been told that the category of a "technically acceptable proposal" contained in a letter of non-funding (with a one-year deferral) constitutes a validation that can be used to submit the proposal elsewhere within the government?  Is this correct, and if so, does Darpa have a way of making the grounds of technical acceptability more precise?
Answer 46:  The determination "technically acceptable" is applicable to DARPA, only.  Other Government departments, agencies and offices, are under no obligation to accept DARPA's determination.  If another Government department, agency or office, expresses an interest in a proposal that has been submitted to DARPA, DARPA will respond and support that department, agency or office, to the degree that it is allowed under the circumstances at that time.

Question 47:  What are my options regarding debrief and resubmission if I received a letter stating I was not selected for award?
Answer 47:  If your proposal response had the words "not selected for award", you may re-submit your proposal(s), or alternatively re-propose.  However, if you wish to resubmit or alternatively re-propose, you may receive a debrief only after the final proposal submission date of 3 November 2000.  Alternatively, if you choose not to resubmit or alternatively re-propose, you may receive a debrief earlier than November.  You may request a debrief by sending a request to BAA00-07@darpa.mil, the Program Manager, or the Contracting Officer.  A debrief will be scheduled at a time convenient to the offeror, the Program Manager, and the Contracting Officer. Please note there is explicit information on the PIP (and note the links within) to assist you in preparing a submission.  To reiterate the policy, if a debrief is requested and given before the BAA closes (3 November 2000), a subsequent proposal from that offeror will not be accepted.

Question 48:  I see that a CBD modification dated 4-26-2000 re-opened BAA 00-07, "Agent-Based Computing".  Can you tell me if any awards were made after the BAA's original 2/7/2000 due date?

Answer 48:  Awards were made based on the initial wave of proposals which has absorbed the FY 00 available funds  New funding decisions are not anticipated during the remainder of this fiscal year. A list of current awardees can be found at http://www.task-program.org and http://www.daml.org.

Question 49:  Question 24 of the FAQs makes it sound like this BAA 00-07 is not interested in agents, but tools to develop agents (i.e. an interface that makes it easy to specify such agents). But then elsewhere in the BAA there are several paragraphs on the idea of emergent behavior, which suggests that you want more than just tools to develop agents. So, the question is: are you more interested in interfaces that make agent development simpler (using existing agent technology) or revolutionary new ways to specify agents and build them by example?

Answer 49:  Yes, you have highlighted two areas of interest, that of interfaces that make agent development easier and revolutionary new ways to specify agents (i.e. tools) and the experimentation that would test those methods.

Question 50:  Question 48 referred to FY 00 funding being previously absorbed and I have seen congressional language reflecting significant cuts in IT R&D spending for FY 01.  Have the DAML and TASK programs been affected by those cuts in FY 01?"

Answer 50:  At this juncture, FY 01 funds have just been reduced to the point such that it's likely that very few, if any, new proposals for this BAA can be accepted.

Updated:  September 8, 2000