Section 3: Computation
and economic order. Basic characteristics of human markets illuminate
the expected nature of computational markets. This section describes some of
these characteristics and sketches some of the special issues raised in the
context of computation.
Foundations. The foundations needed for agoric open systems may be
summarized as support for the encapsulation and communication of information,
access, and resources. This section describes these foundations and their role
in computational markets.
Section 5: Agents and
strategies. The foundations of computational markets handle neither
resource management (such as processor scheduling and garbage collection) nor
market transactions. This section describes the idea of business agents and
their use both in replacing centralized resource-allocation algorithms
(discussed further by [III]) and in managing
complex market behavior.
Section 6: Agoric
systems in the large. Large, evolved agoric systems are expected to
have valuable emergent properties. This section describes how they can provide
a more productive software market in human society-opening major new business
opportunities-and how they can further the goal of artificial intelligence.
Section 7: The absence
of agoric systems. If market-based computation is a good idea, why has
it not yet been developed? This section attempts to show why the current
absence of agoric systems is consistent with their being a good idea.
Appendix I: Issues,
levels, and scale. Agoric open systems will be large and complex,
spanning many levels of scale and complexity. This section surveys how issues
such as security, reasoning, and trust manifest themselves at different levels
of agoric systems.
Comparison with other systems. Here are reviewed works ranging from
those that draw analogies between human society and computational systems to
those that explore adaptive computation from an economic point of view.