Research Output

Combining dimensional analysis and heuristics for causal ordering.

  This paper is a refined version of the work that the authors presented at the 13th International Workshop on Qualitative Reasoning, jointly with the late Dr Rob Milne. It is dedicated to Rob in recognition of his significant contribution and support for the research described herein.

The paper presents a novel approach for generating causal dependencies between system variables, from an acausal description of the system behaviour, and for identifying the end causal impact, in terms of whether a change in the value of an influencing variable will lead to an increase or a decrease in the value of the influenced variables. This work is based on the use of the conventional method for dimensional analysis developed in classical physics, in conjunction with the exploitation of general heuristics. The utility of the work is demonstrated with its application to providing causal explanation for a benchmark problem that involves a dynamic feedback loop. The results reflect well the common-sense understanding of the causality in such a system that is otherwise difficult to capture using conventional causal ordering methods.

  • Type:

    Book Chapter

  • Date:

    31 July 2006

  • Publication Status:


  • Publisher

    IOS Press

  • Library of Congress:

    QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science

  • Dewey Decimal Classification:

    005 Computer programming, programs & data


Shen, Q. & Peng, T. (2006). Combining dimensional analysis and heuristics for causal ordering. In Bundy, A. & Wilson, S. (Eds.). Rob Milne: A Tribute to a Pioneering AI Scientist, Entrepreneur and Mountaineer, 39-53. IOS Press. ISBN 1-58603-639-4



Rob Milne; causal dependencies; system variables; influence; dimensional analysis; heuristics;

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