In this paper an object-centric perspective on planning domain definition is presented along with an overview of GIPO (graphical interface for planning with objects), a supporting tools environment. It is argued that the object-centric view assists the domain developer in conceptualizing the domain’s structure, and we show how GIPO enables the developer to capture that conceptualization at an appropriate and matching conceptual level. GIPO is an experimental environment which provides a platform for exploring and demonstrating the range and scope of tools required to support the knowledge engineering aspects of creating and validating planning systems, both for classical pre-condition planning and hierarchical planning. GIPO embodies the object-centric view, leading to a range of benefits typically associated with object-oriented methods in other fields of software engineering such as highly visual development methods, code reuse and efficient, reliable development.
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