A New Inference Method for Frame-Based Expert Systems

James A. Reggia, Dana S. Nau, Pearl Y. Wang

This paper introduces a new frame-based model of diagnostic reasoning which is based on a generalization of the classic set covering problem in mathematics. The model directly handles multiple simultaneous disorders, it can be formalized, it is intuitively plausible, it provides an approach to partial matching, and it is justifiable in terms of past empirical studies of human diagnostic reasoning. We are using this model as an inference method in diagnostic expert systems, and contrast it with the inference methods used in previous similar systems.

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