Agent software technologies are currently still in an early stage of market development, where, arguably, the majority of users adopting the technology are visionaries who have recognized the long-term potential of agent systems. Some current adopters also see short-term net commercial benefits from the technology, and more potential users will need to perceive such benefits if agent technologies are to become widely used. One way to assist potential adopters to assess the costs and benefits of agent technologies is through the sharing of actual deployment histories of these technologies. Working in collaboration with several companies and organizations in Europe and North America, we have studied deployed applications of agent technologies, and we present these case studies in detail in this paper. We also review the lessons learnt, and the key issues arising from the deployments, to guide decision-making in research, in development and in implementation of agent software technologies.
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