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Open Access Publications from the University of California

A qualitative logic of decision


An important aspect of intelligent behavior is the ability to reason, make decisions, and act in spite of uncertainty. This paper presents a qualitative logic of decision that supports decision-making under uncertainty. To be specific, the paper presents a knowledge representation language based upon subjective Bayesian decision theory that aims to capture some aspects of common-sense reasoning associated with making decisions about actions. The language addresses the problem of describing justifications of rational choices in situations where the alternatives involve trading off potential losses and gains. The logic and an associated qualitative arithmetic are implemented in an efficient PROLOG program. Examples illustrate their use in several concrete decision-making situations.

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