Abstracting Operators for Hierarchical Planning
Many hierarchical planning systems use hierarchies of concrete and ahstract operators. Since operator ahstraction is particularly useful in domains providing a big number of complex operators, the definition of ahstract operators 'by hand' is hard and error prone. This paper describes an algorithm which supports the designer of the knowledge base of the problem domain by automatically deriving a hierarchy of abstract operators from a given set of concrete ones. lt further defines a set of rules how to formally derive preconditions, postconditions as well as so-called operator capabilities of an ahstract operator from the corresponding conditions of the constituting more concrete operators. The proposed algorithms were successfully used in a planning system for UNIX.
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