Alison Pease

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                   Photo by FreezeFrameStudio The system HRL incorporates Simon Colton's program HR, which is named after mathematicians Godfrey Harold Hardy (1877 - 1947) and Srinivasa Aiyangar Ramanujan (1887 - 1920), and extends it by modelling Lakatos's methods and enabling dialogue between multiple copies of HR. Thus, the name HRL reflects our debt to HR, and highlights the importance of the philosopher Imre Lakatos (1922-1974) and the deep influence of his work on our system.

This runs under java version 4. Unfortunately, it does not currently run under later versions. Please feel free to email me if you have any queries.

To download HRL

Download and unzip class files.tar.gz, and store in a directory called "classes".
Download and unzip files.tar.gz, and store in a directory called "files". These include both domain files (.hrd) and macro files (.hrm).

Make the following files and store them all in the same directory, under the same name as given here, in a directory from which both class and domain files can be read:

(i) Download hr_agency.cfg. Set the value of "input files directory" to the files directory above. Make a directory called "store" and set the "storage directory" field to the store directory address. Fill in the "name" field. Change the values of the other fields if necessary.

(ii) Download and make executable the files maketeacher and makestudent.

(iii) Download and make executable the files agency:1, agency:2, agency:3, and agency:4. These are the commands to run the agency with one, two, three and four students respectively. Note that you can run HRL with more students by adding further makestudent commands to the agency:"n" files.

To run HRL

Go to the directory in which you stored the files (i) hr_agency.cfg, (ii) maketeacher, makestudent, and (iii) agency:1, agency:2, agency:3 and agency:4. This directory can also read the classes and domain files directory. At the command line, type agency:"n" (for n = 2 to 4). This will set off "n" copies of HR and a teacher, which will all come up on your screen. Load the macros. You need to do this individually for each student and the teacher. For instance, if you want to run the agency with three students in animals theory, type agency:3, and then for one student click on a-mb-animals-S1.hrm at the top of the left hand column, for another click on a-mb-animals-S2.hrm and for the third click on a-mb-animals-S3.hrm. For the teacher click on a-mb-animals-teacher.hrm. Note that you can distinguish student from the teacher in the title bar. After highlighting the hrm file, click on the red "play macro" button in the top left hand corner for each agent: you should see "played macro" at the bottom of the screen. For the teacher agent click the "start" button on the bottom left hand corner, and this will start the agency running.

Reading the results

During and after the run, go to the Lakatos screen by clicking on the "Lakatos" button in the bottom left hand corner. This will give you twelve tabs: up to ten students, the teacher and "group". Under the relevant tabs type the Agent file into the yellow box: this will be "8500" for the teacher (omit quotes when you type), "8000" for the first student, "8100" for the second, 8200 for the third, etc. (the address would be "8600" for a seventh student). To read the group file, type "group-file". This will access the file which the students and the teacher write to during the discussion. You can look at individual theories, for instance, concepts and definitions, by clicking on the relevant button along the bottom of the screen for each student. To end a run, click on the "stop" button on the teacher's screen. Note that after each run you should delete or move the files "8000", "8100", etc. and the "group-file" (otherwise the old files will be read for a new run).


The domain files for these examples are at the top of the left hand column (just underneath the red button "Play macro").

(1) (in which the platypus is barred)
Run agency:3 and load the domain files:
in the first, second, third student and teacher, respectively.

(2) (in which the students have different ideas of what constitutes a group)
Run agency:3 and load the domain files:
in the first, second, third student and teacher, respectively.

(3) (in which Goldbach's conjecture is generated, given the main concepts in it)
Run agency:2 and load the domain files:
in the first, second student and teacher, respectively.