The Battle for the Best Software Systems
The current state of the research on agent-oriented software engineering is very much a battle field. As enabling technologies such as Grid, Web Services, Semantic Web,
and Peer-to-peer computing, etc., are rapidly becoming mature, the Internet and the Web have become a powerful computing platform with a number of new features such as dynamic and autonomous resources. Consequently, software engineering is now facing a tremendous challenge of developing more powerful but also much more complex software systems running in such dynamic environments. The past few years has seen a rapid growth of research activities on how to meet the challenge so that such Internet/Web-based software systems can be developed efficiently with high quality. As a result agent-oriented software development methodologies have been proposed and advanced. IOS Press published a special issue of the journal Multiagent and Grid Systems: Agent-oriented Software Development Methodologies. It includes a number of high-quality papers from leading researchers in the area and covers a wide range of aspects of the emerging new methodology, which include metamodels, process models, languages, tools as well as applications in various domains. These papers present a snapshot of the current state of art. For readers who are not familiar with the topic, an introduction to these papers and a brief discussion of their backgrounds in a uniform framework can be found in the editorial by the guest editor Professor Hong Zhu.