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Open Access Publications from the University of California


ICS has a technical report series, three academic departments and 3 ORUs associated with it that each generate new information and knowledge.

Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Sciences

There are 2569 publications in this collection, published between 1970 and 2023.
ICS Technical Reports (971)

Theory formation by abduction : initial results of a case study based on the chemical revolution

Abduction is the process of constructing explanations. This chapter suggests that automated abduction is a key to advancing beyond the "routine theory revision" methods developed in early AI research towards automated reasoning systems capable of "world model revision" — dramatic changes in systems of beliefs such as occur in children's cognitive development and in scientific revolutions. The chapter describes a general approach to automating theory revision based upon computational methods for theory formation by abduction. The approach is based on the idea that, when an anomaly is encountered, the best course is often simply to suppress parts of the original theory thrown into question by the contradiction and to derive an explanation of the anomalous observation based on relatively solid, basic principles. This process of looking for explanations of unexpected new phenomena can lead by abductive inference to new hypotheses that can form crucial parts of a revised theory. As an illustration, the chapter shows how some of Lavoisier's key insights during the Chemical Revolution can be viewed as examples of theory formation by abduction.

Exploring the episodic structure of algebra story problem solving

This paper analyzes the quantitative and situational structure of algebra story problems, uses these materials to propose an interpretive framework for written problem-solving protocols, and then presents an exploratory study of the episodic structure of algebra story problem solving in a sizable group of mathematically competent subjects. Analyses of written protocols compare the strategic, tactical, and conceptual content of solution attempts, looking within these attempts at the interplay between problem comprehension and solution. Comprehension and solution of algebra story problems are complimentary activities, giving rise to a succession of problem solving episodes. While direct algebraic problem solving is sometimes effective, results suggest that the algebraic formalism may be of little help in comprehending the quantitative constraints posed in a problem text. Instead, competent problem solvers often reason within the situational context presented by a story problem, using various forms of "model-based reasoning" to identify, pursue, and verify quantitative constraints required for solution. The paper concludes by discussing the implications of these findings for acquiring mathematical concepts (e.g., related linear functions) and for supporting their acquisition through instruction.

Survey of unified approaches to integrated-service networks

The increasing demand for communication services, coupled with recent technological advances in communication media and switching techniques, has resulted in a proliferation of new and expanded services. Currently, networks are needed which can transmit voice, data, and video services in an application-independent fashion. Unified approaches employ a single switching technique across the entire network bandwidth, thus, allowing services to be switched in an application-independent manner. This paper presents a taxonomy of integrated-service networks including a look at N-ISDN, while focusing on unified approaches to integrated-service networks.

The two most promising unified approaches are burst and fast packet switching. Burst switching is a circuit switching-based approach which allocates channel bandwidth to a connection only during the transmission of "bursts" of information. Fast packet switching is a packet switching-based approach which can be characterized by very high transmission rates on network links and simple, hardwired protocols which match the rapid channel speed of the network. Both approaches are being proposed as possible implementations for integrated-service networks. We survey these two approaches, and also examine the key performance issues found in fast packet switching. We then present the results of a simulation study of a fast packet switching network.

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