Action and knowledge in alternating-time temporal logic

Synthese 149 (2):375 - 407 (2006)
Alternating-time temporal logic (ATL) is a branching time temporal logic in which statements about what coalitions of agents can achieve by strategic cooperation can be expressed. Alternating-time temporal epistemic logic (ATEL) extends ATL by adding knowledge modalities, with the usual possible worlds interpretation. This paper investigates how properties of agents’ actions can be expressed in ATL in general, and how properties of the interaction between action and knowledge can be expressed in ATEL in particular. One commonly discussed property is that an agent should know about all available actions, i.e., that the same actions should be available in indiscernible states. Van der Hoek and Wooldridge suggest a syntactic expression of this semantic property. This paper shows that this correspondence in fact does not hold. Furthermore, it is shown that the semantic property is not expressible in ATEL at all. In order to be able to express common and interesting properties of action in general and of the interaction between action and knowledge in particular, a generalization of the coalition modalities of ATL is proposed. The resulting logics, ATL-A and ATEL-A, have increased expressiveness without loosing ATL’s and ATEL’s tractability of model checking.
Keywords Philosophy   Philosophy   Epistemology   Logic   Metaphysics   Philosophy of Language
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