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Cognitive Architecture Working Group


Cognitive Architecture Working Group Wiki Pages

This is where all of the info, papers, discussions and what not about the Cognitive Architecture Group will reside. This is for internal ICT use only, if the group so elects we can create a web site also. Paul Rosenbloom is the main person in charge of this working group.

There is a mailing list for this group [1] - Send mail to helpdesk to be added/removed.

Purpose of the Cognitive Architecture Working Group

Over the past decade, the field has made some progress in the development of Cognitive Architectures, and perhaps more progress on some of the key components in isolation. At the same time, the burgeoning of work on Virtual Humans has been providing a great challenge/driver for integration. Bottom line, this looks like a good time to take a fresh look at the topic in light of the past decade's experience to see if any significant new paths for progress can be identified.

The goals for this working group are to: (1) review "recent" (past decade) developments in Cognitive Architecture across the field (AI/Cog/Sci/Psych); (2) review what has been going on at ICT in Cognitive Architecture and Virtual Humans, and related areas; (3) investigate particular subareas of the field where there has been significant progress and which seem ripe for an impact on Cognitive Architectures; (4) have a wide ranging discussion of issues surrounding Cognitive Architectures; and (5) formulate some concrete proposals for taking the next step(s) on the science and engineering of Cognitive Architectures.

The group went on hiatus in June of 2009 after covering much of the relevant background material, but is being restarted as of August 2009 to go more into depth on the graphical approach to cognitive architecture, which is attempting to reconstruct the foundations of cognitive architecture by building them from the ground up via graphical models, such as factor graphs -- an approach that is related to Markov networks and Markov random fields -- in service of improving architectural uniformity and functionality. The next section provides papers and presentations on this approach.

Latest Internal Release of Code and Documentation for Graphical Cognitive (or Virtual Human) Architecture

This is where pointers to the latest internal release of the graphical cognitive architecture can be found. The code is at, and the reference sheet is at

Articles and Presentations on the Graphical Approach to Cognitive Architecture


Rosenbloom, P. S. (2009). "Towards a new cognitive hourglass: Uniform implementation of cognitive architecture via factor graphs". In Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Cognitive Modeling (ICCM 2009): Media:ICCM_PSR_TNCH_Final-d.pdf

Rosenbloom, P. S. (2009). "A graphical rethinking of the cognitive inner loop". In Proceedings of The IJCAI International Workshop on Graph Structures for Knowledge Representation and Reasoning: Media:Gkr-psr-GRCIL-f.pdf.

Rosenbloom, P. S. (2009). "Towards Uniform Implementation of Architectural Diversity" in Proceedings of the AAAI Fall Symposium on Multi-Representational Architectures for Human-Level Intelligence: Media:Fall10_PRosenbloom-d.pdf

Rosenbloom, P. S. (2010). "An Integrated Implementation of Rule, Semantic, Episodic and Constraint Memories via Factor Graphs and a Bayesian Decision Cycle", Unpublished: Media:AAAI10_PRosenbloom_D.pdf

Rosenbloom, P. S. (2010). "Rethinking Cognitive Architecture via Graphical Models". "Best of ICCM 2009" special issue of Cognitive Systems Research, In press: Media:CSR_PSR_RCAGM_Final_D.pdf

Rosenbloom, P. S (2010). "An Architectural Approach to Statistical Relational AI". Proceedings of the AAAI-10 Workshop on Statistical Relational AI (StarAI): Media:Rosenbloom_AASRAI_2010_Final-d.pdf

Rosenbloom, P. S (2010). "Speculations on Leveraging Graphical Models for Architectural Integration of Visual Representation and Reasoning". Proceedings of the AAAI-10 Workshop on Visual Representations and Reasoning: Media:Rosenbloom_SLGMAIVRR_2010_Final-d.pdf

Rosenbloom, P. S. (2010). "Combining procedural and declarative knowledge in a graphical architecture". Proceedings of the Tenth International Conference on Cognitive Modeling (ICCM 2010), Media:ICCM_PSR_CPDKGA_Final_D.pdf

Rosenbloom, P. S. (2010). "Implementing first-order variables in a graphical cognitive architecture". Proceedings of the First International Conference on Biologically Inspired Cognitive Architectures (BICA 2010): Media:SFOVGCA_Final_D.pdf

Rosenbloom, P. S. (2011). "From memory to problem solving: Mechanism reuse in a graphical cognitive architecture". Proceedings of the 4th Conference on Artificial General Intelligence (AGI-11), In press: Media:AGI_PSR_RGIM_Final_D.pdf

Raveendran, S., Rosenbloom, Paul S. and Leuski, A. (2011). "Question answering in a graphical cognitive architecture", Unpublished: Media:Aaai-final_ack.pdf

Rosenbloom, P. S. (2011). "Mental imagery in a graphical cognitive architecture". Proceedings of the Second International Conference on Biologically Inspired Cognitive Architectures. Media:Imagery_BICA_2011_final_D.pdf

Rosenbloom, P. S. (2011). "Bridging dichotomies in cognitive architectures for virtual humans". Proceedings of the AAAI Fall Symposium on Advances in Cognitive Systems. Media:ACS_PSR_2011_Final_D.pdf

Chen, J., Demski, A., Han, T., Morency, L-P., Pynadath, P., Rafidi, N. and Rosenbloom, P. S. (2011). "Fusing symbolic and decision-theoretic problem solving + perception in a graphical cognitive architecture". Accepted to the Second International Conference on Biologically Inspired Cognitive Architectures. Media:Fusing_BICA_2011_final_D.pdf

Rosenbloom, P. S. (2012). "Graphical models for integrated intelligent robot architectures". Proceedings of the AAAI Spring Symposium on Designing Intelligent Robots: Reintegrating AI. Media:PSR_DIRRA_final_D.pdf

Rosenbloom, P. S. (2012). "Towards a 50 msec cognitive cycle in a graphical architecture". Submitted to the Eleventh International Conference on Cognitive Modeling (ICCM 2012). Media:ICCM_PSR_RT_Submitted_D.pdf


10/16/08 - Introduction to Bayesian networks: Media:Intro_to_Bayes_Networks.pdf

10/30/08 - Factor Graphs for Cognitive Architecture: Media:Brief_Notes_on_FG_for_CA.pdf

11/13/08 - More on factor graphs: Media:Factor_Graphs3.pdf.

2/9/09 - Markov logic and Soar's decision cycle: Media:K-PS-Search_v2.pdf.

2/13/09 - ISI AI Seminar slides on "Factor Graphs for Cognitive Architecture": Media:TNCH_2-13-09.pdf.

5/27/09 - UW ML Seminar slides on "Towards a Graphical Implementation Level for Cognitive Architecture: Resolving the Diversity Dilemma": Media:TGCA_UW_5-27-09.pdf.

6/26/089 - Presentation at the 29th Soar Workshop' 'on "Graphical Models for Cognitive Architecture Resolving the Diversity Dilemma": Media:rosenbloom.pdf.

7/13/09 - Presentation at the The IJCAI International Workshop on Graph Structures for Knowledge Representation and Reasoning on "A Graphical Rethinking of the Cognitive Inner Loop": Media:GKR_7-11-09.pdf.

7/24/09 - Presentation at the 9th International Conference on Cognitive Modeling on "Towards a New Cognitive Hourglass: Uniform Implementation of Cognitive Architecture via Factor Graphs": Media:TNCH_ICCM_7-24-09.pdf.

8/12/09 & 8/19/09 - Presentation to the CAWG on "Towards an Architecture after Next for ICT": Media:CAWG_8-12-09.pdf.

10/19/09 - Presentation to ICT TAB on "ICT Virtual Human Cognitive Architecture Research": Media:ICT_TAB_VHCAR_10-19-09Updated_v2.pdf.

1/25/10 - Presentation to first year CS PhDs (CS 597) on "Rethinking Cognitive Architecture: Reconciling Uniformity and Diversity via Graphical Models": Media:CS597_RCA_Spring_2010_1-25-10.pdf.

5/20/10 - Presentation at 30th Soar Workshop on "A Graphical Memory Architecture": Media:Rosenbloom_Soar_30.pdf.

7/11/10 - Presentation at the AAAI-10 Workshop on Visual Representations and Reasoning on "Speculations on Leveraging Graphical Models for Architectural Integration of Visual Representation and Reasoning": Media:VRR_2010.pdf.
Although an hour presentation, most of it is general background on the approach, with only the last few slides being the speculations.

7/12/10 - Poster at the AAAI-10 Workshop on Statistical Relational AI on "An Architectural Approach to Statistical Relational AI": Media:StarAI_Poster_2010.pdf.

8/6/10 - Presentation at the 10th International Conference on Cognitive Modeling on "Combining Procedural and Declarative Knowledge in a Graphical Architecture": Media:ICCM_2010.pdf.

8/22/10 - Keynote presentation at the 2nd International Conference on Advanced Intelligence on "Towards a New Generation of Cognitive Architectures": Media:ICAI_2010_short.pdf.


10/27/09 - Extended outline on "A Multilevel Bayesian Framework for the Elaboration Phase": Media:Elaboration_Framework_v9.pdf.


Meetings are currently held Mondays 3:30-5:00 in the 6th floor conference room, unless otherwise noted.

Next meeting(s):

Future Meetings:

Mixed and hybrid reasoning via piecewise memories and messages

Semantic versus syntactic coherency in graphical models (with a new semantically coherent match algorithm)

Categorization and generalization

Episodic memory and working memory decay

Previous Meetings:

11/23/09 - We will cover the Polyscheme cognitive architecture/framework and its associated content theory based on cognitive substrates.
A cognitive substrate for achieving human-level intelligence:
An architecture for adaptive algorithmic hybrids: Media:Tsmcb-NCassimatis-2033262-proof.pdf.

11/16/09 - We will cover the Brown, Neath and Chater article on "A Temporal Ratio Model of Memory": Media:Resolver.pdf.
A one page summary can be found at Media:Brown-Neath-Chater-Notes.pdf.

11/9/09 - We will continue with the extended outline, starting at part V (draft of 10/21/09): Media:Elaboration_Framework_v9.pdf.

11/2/09 - We will continue with the extended outline, starting at part IV (draft of 10/21/09): Media:Elaboration_Framework_v8.pdf.

10/26/09 - We will continue with the extended outline, starting at part III (draft of 10/21/09): Media:Elaboration_Framework_v7.pdf.

10/12/09 - Extended outline on "A Multilevel Bayesian Framework for the Elaboration Phase" (draft of 10/11/09): Media:Elaboration_Framework_v6.pdf.

8/5/09 - Review of published state of work on graphical cognitive architecture
Background readings are the three published articles.

5/28/09 - Next Generation Architecture Scenario (for driving representation discussions in planning and inference)

4/6/09 - Bayesian Logic (BLOG)
BLOG: Probabilistic Models with Unknown Objects (
You can find the software and other materials at

3/30/09 - Two general articles on cognitive science/modeling
McClelland, J. L. (2009). The place of modeling in cognitive science. Topics in Cognitive Science, 1, 11-38. [This article is online at]
Chater, N., & Oaksford, M. (2008). The probabilistic mind: Prospects for a Bayesian cognitive science. In N. Chater, & M. Oaksford (Eds.), The probabilistic mind: Prospects for Bayesian cognitive science (pp. 3-31). Oxford: Oxford University Press. [I was able to find the entire text online for this chapter on Google Books at:,M1]

3/20/09 - Dialogue capability
The slides presented can be downloaded at Media:VHUmanDialogueOverview.pdf.
To access the video of this session, you must be at ICT or VPNed in. Go to smb://sfs/data/vhumans (which may be \\sfs\data\vhumans under Windows) and follow the directory hierarchy down through "media", "video" and "cognitive_architectures". The video is ""

3/16/09 - Planning and emotion capabilities
The outline presented at this meeting can be found at Media:CogARchEmotion.pdf.
To access the video of this session, you must be at ICT or VPNed in. Go to smb://sfs/data/vhumans (which may be \\sfs\data\vhumans under Windows) and follow the directory hierarchy down through "media", "video" and "cognitive_architectures". The video is ""

3/9/09 - What is involved in building a new character
The slides presented can be downloaded at Media:A_Common_Ground_for_Virtual_Humans.pdf.

2/23/09 - Initial results on desiderata for next generation ICT cognitive/VH architecture
The handout from this meeting (as revised based on discussion during the meeting) can be found at: Media:CA_Desiderata_v5.pdf.

2/13/09 - ISI AI Seminar slides on Factor Graphs for Cognitive Architecture: Media:TNCH_2-13-09.pdf.

2/9/09 - Markov Logic and Soar's decision cycle
K-PS-Search_v2.pdf The slides I presented can be downloaded at Media:K-PS-Search_v2.pdf.

2/2/09 - Robustness under extension and distributed asynchronous debugging

1/26/09 - Alchemy tutorial (tentative)
Focus of Discussion: The Alchemy Tutorial, by Marc Summer and Pedro Domingos (
Explanatory Background: Markov Logic: A unifying framework for statistical relational learning, by Pedro Domingos and Matthew Richardson (>
Note: Although this paper has the exact same title as the short one listed for 1/9, it is a much longer version (37 vs. 6 pages)
Alchemy software can be found at
There are more details on the Alchemy language in the User Manual. On-line you can find a rather primitive hypertext version of it at
A better pdf version of it comes with the downloaded software. I have uploaded it to the server, and you can access it at Media:Manual.pdf if you are interested

1/9/09 (Friday, 1:30-3:00, 3rd floor large CR) - Alternative implementation layers
Neural networks in SAL/LEABRA(+ACT-R)
A short article: The SAL integrated cognitive architecture (
And a longer one: SAL: An explicitly pluralistic cognitive architecture (

Markov logic networks
A short article: Unifying logical and statistical AI (
Another short article: Markov logic: A unifying framework for statistical relational learning (
And a longer one: Markov Logic Networks (
Article on the "interface layer": What's missing in AI: The interface layer (

Paul Rosenbloom's IJCAI submission on Towards a New Cognitive Hourglass: Uniform Implementation of Cognitive Architecture via Factor Graphs (Updated version, as submitted: Media:Tnch-d.pdf)
Reviews and responses to the reviews (with comments back from one of the reviewers): Media:Tnch_reviews_and_responses.pdf

[Icarus] A Unified Cognitive Architecture for Physical Agents, by Langley, P. & Choi, D. (
Novamente: An Integrative Architecture for General Intelligence, by Looks, M., Goertzel, B. & Pennachin, C. (
OSCAR: An Architecture for Generally Intelligent Agents, by Pollock, J. (

11/13/08 - More on factor graphs
The slides I presented Media:Factor_Graphs3.pdf.

11/6/08 - Issues of agents in environments -- dynamics/incrementality and feedback/tight-coupling -- via work on intelligent robot and virtual human architectures
A review of intelligent systems software for autonomous vehicles, by Long, L N., et al (
RCS: A cognitive architecture for intelligent multi-agent systems, by Albus, J. S. and Barbera, A. J. (
Thoughts on FML: Behavior generation in the virtual human communication architecture, by Lee, J. et al (
A distributed layered architecture for mobile robot coordination: Application to space exploration (
OPTIONAL: Using 4D/RCS to address AI knowledge integration (
OPTIONAL: Towards a common framework for multimodal generation: The behavior markup language, by Kopp, S. et al (

10/30/08 - Factor Graphs and Cognitive Architectures
An Introduction to Factor Graphs by Loeliger, H-A. (
Factor Graphs and the Sum-Product Algorithm by Kschischang F. R., Frey, B. J. and Loeliger, H-A. (;jsessionid=62F58D00DC5437A217D4DAA997B06856?doi=
Notes on Factor Graphs for Cognitive Architecture, by Rosenbloom, P. S. can be found at Media:Brief_Notes_on_FG_for_CA.pdf
The first set of slides from the introduction to factor graphs, presented 9/29, can be found at Media:Factor_Graphs1.pdf
OPTIONAL: Understanding belief propagation and its generalizations, by Yedidia, J. S., Freeman, W. T., and Weiss, Y. (
OPTIONAL: The generalized distributive law, by Aji, S. M. & McEliece, R. J. (
The slides I presented (although we didn't get all of the way through them) can be found at Media:Factor_Graphs2.pdf.

10/23/08 - Modules and APIs in Cognitive Architectures
Readings The Storm paper (From 9/11) if you haven't already read it.
OPTIONAL: Companion Cognitive Systems: Design Goals and Some Lessons Learned, by Forbus, K., Klenk, M. and Hinrichs, T. (

10/16/08 - Introduction to Bayesian networks (as background for reading and understanding factor graph papers)
The slides I presented can be found at Media:Intro_to_Bayes_Networks.pdf. These are extracts from lectures for Intro to AI, but with a couple of additional updated (from last week) factor graph motivational slides.

9/29/08 (1:00-2:30 in the 1st Floor Boardroom) - Natural Language processing in Cognitive Architectures
A Building Block Approach to a Unified Language Capability by Lehman, J. F., Van Dyke, J., Lonsdale, D., Green, N. and Smith, M. (attached to email)
Toward a Large-Scale Model of Language Comprehension in ACT-R 6 by Ball, J., Heiberg, A. and Silber, R. (,%20Heiberg,%20&%20Silber.pdf)
Integration of Background Knowledge in Language Processing: A Unified Theory of Metaphor Understanding, Moses Illusions and Text Memory by Budiu, R. and Anderson, J. R. (
The Information-State Approach to Dialogue Management by Traum, Dr. R and Larsson, S. (
OPTIONAL: Interpretation-Based Processing: A Unified Theory of Semantic Sentence Processing by Budiu R. and Anderson, J. R. (
OPTIONAL: Can NLP Systems be a Cognitive Black Box? by Ball, J. (
OPTIONAL: A Framework for Fast Incremental Interpretation during Speech Decoding, by Schuler, W., Schwartz, L, and Wu, Stephen (
OPTIONAL: Synchronization in an Asynchronous Agent-based Architecture for Dialogue Systems, by Blaylock, N., Allen, J. and Ferguson, G. (
OPTIONAL: COLLAGEN: Applying Collaborative Discourse Theory to Human-Computer Interaction, by Rich, C., Sidner, C. L., and Lesh, N. (

9/11/08 (9:00-10:30) - (1) How to design/implement system that will optimize ability to explore space of architectures and build virtual human; and (2) On what should this working group focus for the next few months?
Storm: A framework for biologically-inspired cognitive architecture research, by Pearson, D., Gorski, N. A., Lewis, R. L. & Laird, J. E. (
Assessing the Maintainability of XCON-in-RIME: Coping with the Problems of a VERY Large Rule-Base, by Soloway, E., Bachant, J. & Jensen, K. In AAAI-87, pp. 824-829. (available in hard copy from Eric Reese)

8/28/08 - CLARION & EPIC
The CLARION Cognitive Architecture: Extending Cognitive Modeling to Social Simulation (
An Overview of the EPIC Architecture for Cognition and Performance with Application to Human-Computer Interaction (

8/21/08 - ACT-R
How Can the Human Mind Occur in the Physical Universe, by John R. Anderson [** Copies Currently Available for Check Out in 304 **]

Optional (assessment of ACT-R and commentaries):
Anderson, J. R. & Lebiere, C., The Newell Test for a theory of cognition, in Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 26. (

7/31/08 - PsychSim
Core Architecture papers (definitely read these):
Pynadath, David V. and Marsella, Stacy C. PsychSim: Modeling Theory of Mind with Decision-Theoretic Agents. In Proceedings of the International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence, pp. 1181-1186, 2005. (
Pynadath, David V. and Marsella, Stacy C. Fitting and Compilation of Multiagent Models through Piecewise Linear Functions. In Proceedings of the International Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multi Agent Systems, pp. 1197-1204, 2004. (

Applications (read these if interested):
Pynadath, David V. and Marsella, Stacy C. Minimal mental models In Proceedings of the conference on artificial intelligence (AAAI) pp. July, 2007. (
Ito, J., Pynadath, D.V. and Marsella, S.C. Modeling Self-Deception within a Decision-Theoretic Framework In Proceedings of the Conference on Intelligence Virtual Agents (IVA) September, 2008. (

7/24/08 - ICT Virtual Human architecture
William Swartout, Jonathan Gratch, Randall Hill, Eduard Hovy, Stacy Marsella, Jeff Rickel and David Traum, “Toward Virtual Humans,” in AI Magazine, v.27(1), 2006. (
Jonathan Gratch and Stacy Marsella, "A Domain-independent framework for modeling emotion, " Journal of Cognitive Systems Research, Volume 5, Issue 4, 2004, pp. 269-306. (
D. R. Traum, W. Swartout, J Gratch, S Marsella, "A Virtual Human Dialogue Model for Non-team Interaction", in Recent Trends in Discourse and Dialogue Springer, Laila Dybkjaer and Wolfgang Minker, Eds, pp. 45--67, 2008. (

7/17/08 - Two general papers on Cognitive Architecture
Contemporary Approaches to Artificial General Intelligence, by Pennachin, C. and Goertzel, B. (
Cognitive Architectures: Where do we go from here?, by Duch, W. Oentaryo, R. J., and Pasquier, M. (

7/10/08 - Continue with the discussion from 6/27

6/27/08 - Soar 9
Extending the Soar Architecture, by Laird, J. (

6/12/08 - First Meeting to Introduce everyone
Cognitive Architectures: Research Issues and Challenges, by Langley P., Laird, J. and Rogers, S. (

Possible General Topics for Future Meetings:

TBD - Possible follow up on 11/6 discussion of dynamics/incrementality and feedback/tight-coupling

TBD - Dialogue management in mixed factor graphs

TBD - MDP and cognitive architecture

TBD - Social interaction and cognitive architecture

TBD - Latency issues in real-time virtual humans

TBD - Towards incremental perception/understanding in real-time virtual humans

TBD - Argumentation structures and processes

TBD - Go through a current VH demo live, understanding pieces, their interactions, and issues?

TBD - Behavior arbitration, sequencing and blending
Towards a common framework for multimodal generation: The Behavior Markup Language, by Kopp, S. et al (
Social performance framework, by Vilhjalmsson, H. and Marsella, S. C. (


Discussion Topics

Possible list of Cognitive architectures to cover
Toronto architecture (Golog?)
Anything out of BICA?
Something out of Max?
Something out of German group?
Harmonic mind

Possible list of areas to review
Probabilistic reasoning and Markov decision processes
Social interaction
Body state (modeled or "real")
Knowledge representation
Common sense psychology
Personality: pessimism, optimism

General issues
Cognitive architecture as a unified theory versus an engineering toolkit
Authorability and maintenance of systems built with architectures
Metaprinciples for designing/developing cognitive architectures
Open source model for development

Some goals that could be gone after
Enable the system to discuss its goals, activities and feelings

Books we could consider reading all or part of
"Unified Theories of Cognition", Allen Newell, 1994
"Modeling Human Behavior with Integrated Cognitive Architectures", Pew and Gluck (Eds.), 2005
"Modeling Human and Organizational Behavior: Application to Military Simulations", NRC, 1998
"Artificial General Intelligence 2008: Proceedings of the First AGI Conference", IOS, 2008

Discussion Papers

"Cognitive Architectures: Research Issues and Challenges", by Langley, Laird and Rogers (2006):

"Extending the Soar Cognitive Architecture" by John Laird (2008):

"R1-Soar: an experiment in knowledge-intensive programming in a problem-solving architecture", by P. Rosenbloom, J. E. Laird, A. Newell, E. Orciuch, IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence, 7, 561-569, 1985.

Books of Interest

John Anderson's latest book on ACT-R: "How Can the Human Mind Occur in the Physical Universe"

Allen Newell's: "Unified Theories of Cognition"

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