Fuzzy Reasoning as a Control Problem

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Fuzzy Reasoning as a Control Problem

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Kai-Yuan Cai and Lei Zhang

reasoning as generalization of classical logical inference, in this

paper fuzzy reasoning is treated as a control problem. A new fuzzy

reasoning method is proposed that employs an explicit feedback

mechanism to improve the robustness of fuzzy reasoning. The

fuzzy rule base given a priori serves as a controlled object, and the

fuzzy reasoning method serves as the corresponding controller.

The fuzzy rule base and the fuzzy reasoning method constitute a

control system that may be open loop or closed loop, depending on

the underlying reasoning goals/constraints. The fuzzy rule base,

the fuzzy reasoning method, and the corresponding reasoning

goals/constraints dene the three distinct ingredients of fuzzy

reasoning. While various existing fuzzy reasoning methods are

essentially a static mapping from the universe of single fuzzy

premises to the universe of single fuzzy consequences, the new

fuzzy reasoning method maps sequences of fuzzy premises to sequences of fuzzy consequences and is a function of the underlying

reasoning goals/constraints. The Monte Carlo simulation shows

that the new fuzzy reasoning method is much more robust than

the optimal fuzzy reasoning method proposed in our previous

work. The explicit feedback mechanism embedded in the fuzzy

reasoning method does signicantly improve the robustness of

fuzzy reasoning, which is concerned with the effects of perturbations associated with given fuzzy rule bases and/or fuzzy premises

on fuzzy consequences. The work presented in this paper sets a

new starting point for various principles of feedback control and

optimization to be applied in fuzzy reasoning or logical inference

and to explore new forms of reasoning including robust reasoning

and adaptive reasoning. It can be also expected that the new

fuzzy reasoning method presented in this paper can be used for

modeling and control of complex systems and for decision-making

under complex environments.

Index TermsFeedback control, fuzzy reasoning, optimal fuzzy

reasoning, robustness, triple ingredients perspective.

I. INTRODUCTION

XISTING research on fuzzy reasoning can roughly be

divided into three overlapping categories: fuzzy reasoning

methods and their analysis, logical foundation of fuzzy reasoning, and applications of fuzzy reasoning. Various fuzzy

methods have been proposed and are mainly based on three

different ideas. The rst idea is that of composition. This leads

to the Zadeh compositional rule of inference (CRI) method

[1] and its variants [2][4]. The second idea is that of analogy

and similarity [5][8]. The third idea is that of interpolation

[9], [10]. Analysis of fuzzy reasoning methods is concerned

26, 2006. This work was supported by the National Science Foundation of

China under Grant 60474006 and by the 863 Programme of China under Grant

2006AA01Z174.

The authors are with the Department of Automatic Control, Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Beijing 100083, China (e-mail:

kycai@buaa.edu.cn; zhanglei@buaa.edu.cn).

Digital Object Identier 10.1109/TFUZZ.2007.896275

fuzzy rules [11], consistency of new fuzzy consequences with

existing fuzzy premises, and continuity of fuzzy consequences

with respect to fuzzy premises and fuzzy relations [12]. Since

numerous different implication operators and connectives can

be adopted in fuzzy reasoning methods, an important class of

analysis of fuzzy reasoning methods is concerned with suitability of fuzzy reasoning or which fuzzy reasoning methods

are suitable for domain specic applications [13][15].

The logical foundation of fuzzy reasoning is concerned with

formal systems in which various fuzzy reasoning methods can

be interpreted. Several formal systems of this kind have been

proposed, including basic logic [16], monoidal t-norm based

logic [17], the quasi-formal deductive system of Wang [18], and

possibilistic logic [19]. These formal systems are mainly generalizations of classical propositional logic and multivalued logic.

On the other hand, applications of fuzzy reasoning methods are

extensive and can be found in disparate areas such as complex

systems modeling and control [20], pattern recognition [21], decision making [22], and safety guarding [23], among others [24],

[25].

No matter what ideas are adopted to determine fuzzy reasoning methods, what formal systems are developed for fuzzy

reasoning methods, or which areas fuzzy reasoning methods are

applied to, the basic philosophy of fuzzy reasoning is to mimic

the process of human reasoning and to transform human expertise into quantitative terms. Ideally, there should be one-to-one

correspondence between human expertise and quantitative

terms. In this way, fuzzy reasoning in mathematically quantitative terms will exactly represent or capture the essence of

human fuzzy reasoning. Unfortunately, the one-to-one correspondence can seldom be observed. For example, the fuzzy

observation about 5 in real-world sense can be represented

in terms of a triangular fuzzy number or of a Gaussian fuzzy

number in a mathematically quantitative formalism, but we

are really not sure which is better to capture the essence of

about 5. Then a question arises: is the difference between the

two fuzzy numbers in mathematically quantitative formalism

important for fuzzy reasoning? Or, is a mathematical fuzzy

reasoning scheme robust or perturbation-resistant against the

deviation of human expertise from its corresponding mathematically quantitative representations [26]? This denes a

robustness issue of fuzzy reasoning.

Note that a fuzzy reasoning method actually denes a mapping from fuzzy premises to fuzzy consequences. The deviation of human expertise from its corresponding mathematically

quantitative representations may lead to errors in fuzzy premises

as well as in the mapping from fuzzy premises to fuzzy consequences. Therefore the robustness issue of fuzzy reasoning

needs to discuss how errors in fuzzy premises and/or the mapping from fuzzy premises to fuzzy consequences affect fuzzy

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consequences in fuzzy reasoning. The importance of the robustness issue can further be justied from other perspectives. In

fuzzy modeling of complex systems, ne representations often

lead to a vast number of fuzzy rules. In order to circumvent

the curse of dimensionality, fuzzy rule base reduction is invoked, which incurs undesirable errors in the mapping from

fuzzy premises to fuzzy consequences [27]. In fuzzy control

with fuzzy inputs, noises are often associated with the fuzzy inputs, and it is highly desirable that the noises can be attenuated

[28].

The robustness issue of fuzzy reasoning was studied in our

previous work [26], [29] in the setting of -equalities of fuzzy

sets1 and extended in the recent work reported in [30]. An important observation is that the popular Zadeh CRI method is

not sufciently robust and should be improved. In contrast, the

optimal fuzzy reasoning methods [31], [32], which treat fuzzy

reasoning as a process of optimization rather than logical inference, can be more robust. It is further shown that optimal fuzzy

reasoning methods can improve the robustness of fuzzy control

systems [33].

Inspired by the general idea in control engineering that feedback can help to attenuate the uncertainty of controlled objects

and the observation noises [34], in this paper we treat fuzzy reasoning as a control problem and embed an explicit feedback

mechanism into an optimal fuzzy reasoning method proposed

in our previous work [31], [32]. The resulting new fuzzy reasoning method is expected to be more robust than the optimal

fuzzy reasoning method, and thus to be much more robust than

the CRI methods and the like. Section II reviews the optimal

fuzzy reasoning method that serves as a reference method in this

paper. Section III introduces three distinct measures to capture

the robustness of the optimal fuzzy reasoning. Section IV formulates the new fuzzy reasoning method proposed in this paper.

Section V presents the results of Monte Carlo simulation to evaluate the robustness of the new fuzzy reasoning method in comparison with the optimal fuzzy reasoning. Section VI discusses

fuzzy reasoning in a general context of feedback control and

proposes the triple ingredients perspective for fuzzy reasoning

and logical inference that may lead to new forms of reasoning

such as robust reasoning and adaptive reasoning. Concluding remarks are contained in Section VII.

II. OPTIMAL FUZZY REASONING

Consider a set of fuzzy rules as follows:

If

If

is

then

then

is

is

If

is

then

is

where

is a fuzzy set dened on the universe of discourse

and

is a fuzzy set dened on the universe of discourse

. The problem of fuzzy modus ponens is concerned

with what is if is a fuzzy set dened on .

Let

and

be the membership functions

of

and , respectively. Suppose is with membership function

. The basic idea of the Zadeh CRI method

is a composition of the given fuzzy rules and

is that

1Two

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601

the given fuzzy premise [1]. In doing so, all the fuzzy rules

are composed into a new fuzzy rule rst, which is then used

to generate a fuzzy consequence in accordance with the given

fuzzy premise. This is the so-called composition-based inference [20]. Alternatively, each of the fuzzy rules is individually used to generate a fuzzy consequence in accordance with

the given fuzzy premise. The resulting fuzzy consequences

are then composed into a new fuzzy consequence. This is the

so-called individual-rule based inference [20]. In this paper, we

follow composition-based inference.

More specically, consider the case of nite discrete uniand

.

verses with

Further, let

where

adopted in the fuzzy relation

is the Mamdani

to the fuzzy

implication operator from the fuzzy premise

composes the fuzzy rules into a single

consequence

fuzzy rule via the union operator, and

determines

the fuzzy consequence corresponding to the fuzzy premise

according to the Zadeh CRI method for fuzzy modus ponens.

It is implicitly assumed that the fuzzy relation incorporates

all the information underlying the fuzzy rules. With this assumption, the problem of fuzzy modus ponens can be restated

as follows: given fuzzy relation and fuzzy premise , what is

the corresponding fuzzy consequence ? The CRI method denes a single fuzzy consequence for each fuzzy premise and is a

generalized version of modus ponens in classical logical inference. The desired properties or goals of the CRI method are not

explicitly stated or used to derive the method.

In contrast, the optimal fuzzy reasoning methods proposed in

our previous work follow a dramatically different idea for fuzzy

modus ponens that can be stated as follows [31][33].

is gained from the

1) Suppose a fuzzy relation (matrix)

experience of experts (fuzzy rules) or data. Then we should

trust and treat it as a basis for evaluating the quality of a

fuzzy reasoning method.

2) If a fuzzy premise

is given, then a fuzzy reasoning

method will generate the corresponding consequence .

A fuzzy reasoning method is optimal if the matrix

is

in some sense, where

,

the closest to

denoting that implies .

A fundamental feature of optimal fuzzy reasoning is that an optimization goal is introduced, which species what is meant by

being the closest to . The process of optimal fuzzy reasoning is goal driven towards optimizing the objective function

given a priori. The resulting fuzzy reasoning process is no longer

dened a priori. Rather, it depends on the underlying goal for

reasoning and is derived. Different goals lead to different fuzzy

602

premise implies different fuzzy consequences for different reasoning goals. This makes optimal fuzzy reasoning dramatically

different from existing methods of fuzzy reasoning as well as

various rules of inference in classical logics. In view of optimal

fuzzy reasoning, more often than not, it is not appropriate to

state If Then for a fuzzy rule. Instead, the fuzzy rule

should be restated as If Then For goal . Suppose a fuzzy

rule is given as If Then in a knowledge base; it can be

reinterpreted as If Then For an arbitrary goal . There

does not seem to exist a counterpart to optimal fuzzy reasoning

in classical logical inference.

Suppose the new fuzzy premise is given as

with

, which implies a new fuzzy consequence dewith

. A specic reasoning

noted as

goal in optimal fuzzy reasoning is to optimize the following objective function [31], [32]:

that minimizes

2) Obtain

Let

Suppose

reduces to

with

The value of

that minimizes

as follows.

. Then

is

if

if

if

(2.1)

For

This objective function measures the absolute distance between

the given fuzzy relation

and the new fuzzy

relation

. Other objective functions

were also adopted in our previous work [31][33]. The resulting fuzzy reasoning processes are optimal in the sense that

the given objective functions are optimized or minimized. The

corresponding to the fuzzy

fuzzy consequence

premise

is determined by minimizing the given

. This is dramatically different from the

objective function

is

CRI method. Note that in the CRI method,

determined by composing the fuzzy relation and the fuzzy

without considering any optimization

premise

or extra function. It is basically a kind of generalizations of

the classical logical modus ponens. No objective function or

reasoning goal is explicitly involved.

, the fuzzy

With the fuzzy relation

, and the objective function

premise

to be mini2

can be

mized, the resulting fuzzy consequence

determined as follows [31], [32]. Note that

where

We can easily see that if the extra objective function achieves

its minimum at

achieves its minimum

. Denote the corresponding values as

at

and

, respectively. In this way,

can be obtained in the

following procedure.

into

such that

1) Rearrange

. Rearrange the row ordering of

into

according to the

change of the row ordering of .

2 [b

convenience.

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or

reduces to

to minimize

. Specically, let

.

1 candidate values

are obOverall,

tained for . Let

In this way

and

3)

.

Symbolically, we can denote

, where denotes

a fuzzy reasoning method such as the one presented in this secthe corresponding fuzzy relation,

the given fuzzy

tion,

premise, and the resulting fuzzy consequence.

A few remarks should be made for the above algorithm. For

any pair of and , the above algorithm guarantees that there

is a consequence . In the case of

in Step 2) of the

above algorithm, we specically let

to avoid multiple choice of consequence. The choice of

asserts

that the maximal grade of membership of the resulting fuzzy

consequence should not be greater than that of the given fuzzy

premise. Intuitively, the maximal condence in the fuzzy consequence should not exceed that in the given fuzzy premise. How, then there must be

and

.

ever, if

The choice of

in Step 2) becomes superuous accordingly.

Now let us consider a simple example to illustrate the difference between the CRI method and the optimal fuzzy reasoning (OFR) method presented in this section. Suppose we obTHEN

; IF

THEN

tain two (crisp) rules: IF

TABLE I

1 0

THE REASONING RESULTS FOR R =

0 1

AND

A = (x 1) WITH TWO

DIFFERENT METHODS

. Then we obtain

that they are good at handling crisp premises and stand at a neutral position towards handling fuzzy premises. In other words,

if the given premises are slightly fuzzy, then the resulting consequences should be slightly fuzzy too. On the other hand, if

the given premises are highly fuzzy, then the resulting consequences should not have preference to any particular points in

the corresponding universe of discourse. This intuition can be

demonstrated as follows.

. Table I tabulates the reasoning results

Suppose

for the CRI and OFR methods. The CRI method does not invoke an optimization goal and thus generates a uniform result

of

irrespective of the value of . The CRI method

is always sensitive to any change in . For the OFR method,

implies that the given premise

is close

to a crisp one and thus it is reasonable to have a slightly fuzzy

consequence

. The OFM method is sensitive to any

change in and thus is good at handling slightly fuzzy premises.

For

, the given premise

is

modestly fuzzy. The resulting consequences should be modestly

fuzzy too. Further, the fuzzy consequence should be insensitive

looks reasonto minor changes in . In this way

able. For

, the given premise is highly fuzzy and

the grades of membership at the different points of the universe

of the discourse of are close to each other. The OFR method

is totally incapable of handing them and thus always generate

an invariant consequence

, which is most fuzzy.

Therefore, the OFR method should be more intuitively attractive and reasonable than the CRI method.

An undesirable phenomenon associated with this example

is that the value of the second entry of

changes from 1 at

to 0.5 for

. A minor increment in leads

to a drop in the grade of membership at a particular point of the

universe of discourse for the fuzzy consequence. This implies

that the optimal fuzzy reasoning method should be improved in

the future. The underlying cause for this phenomenon is the objective function adopted in (2.1). While the objective function

helps the optimal fuzzy reasoning method to achieve the desirable robustness (in terms of the robustness measures presented

in Section III), the optimal fuzzy reasoning method is not sufciently robust for the particular fuzzy premise with

.

If the robustness measures presented in Section III are treated

as global (in the sense that they are not stuck to any particular

fuzzy premises), then roughly speaking, the global robustness is

achieved at expense of local robustness (with respect to a particular fuzzy premise). Fortunately, the local robustness is somewhat compromised only for the particular fuzzy premise with

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603

the very example given above, the grade of membership at the

rst point of universe of discourse for the fuzzy consequence

keeps invariant (at 0.5) as

is changed to

.

The undesirable phenomenon may be alleviated to some extent

by adopting alternative objection functions in (2.1), which set

constraints for local robustness for particular fuzzy premises of

concern. What alternative objective functions should be adopted

denes a research topic for future investigation. However, even

in the presence of the undesirable phenomenon, the simulation

results presented in Section V show that the new fuzzy reasoning method that adopts an explicit feedback mechanism still

achieves satisfactory robustness behavior.

The above formulation is stuck at the single-input and singleoutput case. The generalization to the multiple-input and singleoutput case or the multiple-input and multiple-output case is

straightforward. For example, consider the following rule.

is

is

, and

is

, then is .

If

can be dened on the universe

Then a fuzzy matrix

, where

is the universe of discourse for fuzzy

sets

. Further, a multiple-input and multiple-output fuzzy rule can be treated as a set of multiple-input

and single-output fuzzy rules. On the other hand, if the underlying

universes are continuous, then they can be discretized as appropriate.Herewenotethatmultiple-inputandmultiple-outputfuzzy

rules dened on continuous universes of discourse are widely employed in fuzzy modeling and control [20].

III. ROBUSTNESS MEASURES

An advantage of optimal fuzzy reasoning methods over the

CRI method or other existing methods of fuzzy reasoning is that

optimal fuzzy reasoning methods are more easily understood.

Each optimal fuzzy reasoning method is determined by a reasoning goal specied by a given objective function. However,

existing methods of fuzzy reasoning are often treated as generalizations of classical logical inference. The corresponding logic

foundation is still obscure and the generalizations from logical

inference to fuzzy reasoning look arbitrary in some sense. Another advantage of optimal fuzzy reasoning methods is that they

may be more robust than the CRI method. Given a fuzzy relation (determined by the given set of fuzzy rules) and a fuzzy

premise , a robustness measure (RM) quanties how errors

associated with and/or lead to errors in the corresponding

fuzzy consequences. RM should be a function of and . However, it is also a function of the underlying reasoning method.

Symbolically, we denote RM

, where denotes

the underlying method adopted for fuzzy reasoning. Let

be

the error of , and

the corresponding

the error of

error of . There are at least three different categories of robustness measures that we can adopt.

A. Robustness Measure I

The rst category of robustness measures considers

and ignores

. Symbolically, we denote

only

604

where

is said to

in a mathematically rigorous term here. Method

and

than method

if

be more robust with respect to

.

, it may not be easy

Given a robustness measure

to evaluate the robustness of the fuzzy reasoning method in

an analytical manner. However, the Monte Carlo simulation can

help as demonstrated in our previous work [32]. The following

algorithm shows how a robustness measure of interest can be

calculated.

Simulation Algorithm 1:

Step 1) Obtain the fuzzy consequence

corresponding to the fuzzy premise with fuzzy relation

in accordance with the optimal fuzzy reasoning

method presented in Section II.

Step 2) Generate 50 sets of random numbers

,

taking values in the interval ( 1/40,

with

1/40) in accordance with a uniform probability

distribution.

Step 3) Let

if

if

if

Step 4) Let

.

Step 5) Obtain the fuzzy consequence

corresponding to the fuzzy premise

with

in accordance with the optimal

fuzzy relation

fuzzy reasoning method presented in Section II,

.

Step 6) Calculate

where

denotes the optimal fuzzy reasoning

method presented in Section II and

Step 7) Stop.

. However,

Here we note that it is assumed that

this is not essential. Other values can be assigned to and .

The simulation is actually conducted for 50 trials, each of which

generates a value for measuring robustness of fuzzy reasoning.

Step 6) calculates the average of these values and treats it as the

index of robustness of fuzzy reasoning. Of course, more trials

of simulation can be conducted for calculating the robustness

measure.

The robustness measure calculated in Step 6) takes account

of errors in the resulting fuzzy consequences as well as their

causing errors in fuzzy premises and looks like a measure of

partial difference. This is different from the robustness measures

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in the resulting fuzzy consequences and ignores their causing

errors in fuzzy premises. However, the robustness measure calculated in Step 6) is dened for a given pair of and , considering perturbations of fuzzy premises only. Obviously, this

is not sufcient to evaluate the robustness of a given fuzzy reasoning method. A better robustness measure should be a function of the given fuzzy reasoning method only and is irrelevant

of specic fuzzy relations and fuzzy premises. As a result, we

have the following algorithm with 500 trials of simulation being

conducted.

Simulation Algorithm 2:

Step 1) Generate 500 pairs of fuzzy relations and fuzzy

at random

premises

as follows, where

. For each

and

are

each generated in accordance with the uniform

probability distribution dened over the interval

.

Step 2) For each pair

, perform Simulation

Algorithm 1 and obtain

.

Step 3) Let

Step 4) Stop.

B. Robustness Measure II

The second category of robustness measures considers

only and ignores

. Symbolically, we denote

where

denotes certain norm operator.

As for

, we can have the following algorithm to

.

evaluate

Simulation Algorithm 3:

Step 1) Obtain the fuzzy consequence

corresponding to the fuzzy premise with fuzzy relation

in accordance with the optimal

fuzzy reasoning method presented in Section II.

Step 2) Generate 50 sets of random numbers

,

taking values in the interval

with

in accordance with a uniform

probability distribution.

Step 3) Let

if

if

if

Step 4) Let

.

Step 5) Obtain the fuzzy consequence

corresponding to the fuzzy premise

with fuzzy

relation

in accordance with the optimal

605

.

Step 6) Calculate

Step 3) Let

if

if

if

if

if

if

where

denotes the optimal fuzzy reasoning

method presented in Section II and

Step 7) Stop.

Similar to Simulation Algorithm 2, we can have the following

algorithm.

Simulation Algorithm 4:

Step 1) Generate 500 pairs of fuzzy relations and fuzzy

premises

, at random

as follows, where

. For each

and

are

each generated in accordance with the uniform

probability distribution dened over the interval

.

, perform Simulation

Step 2) For each pair

Algorithm 3 and obtain

.

Step 3) Let

Step 4) Stop.

C. Robustness Measure III

The third category of robustness measures considers

well as

as

is as follows.

Simulation Algorithm 5:

Step 1) Obtain the fuzzy consequence

correwith fuzzy relasponding to the fuzzy premise

in accordance with the optimal

tion

fuzzy reasoning method presented in Section II.

Step 2) Generate 50 sets of random numbers

, with

and

each taking

values in the interval ( 1/40, 1/40) in accordance

with a uniform probability distribution.

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Step 4) Let

.

Step 5) Obtain the fuzzy consequence

corresponding to the fuzzy premise

with

in accordance with the optimal

fuzzy relation

fuzzy reasoning method presented in Section II,

.

Step 6) Calculate

where

denotes the optimal fuzzy reasoning

method presented in Section II and

Step 7) Stop.

Similar to Simulation Algorithm 2, we can have the following

algorithm.

Simulation Algorithm 6:

Step 1) Generate 500 pairs of fuzzy relations and fuzzy

at random

premises

as follows, where

. For each

and

are

each generated in accordance with the uniform

probability distribution dened over the interval

.

Step 2) For each pair

, perform Simulation Algorithm 5 and obtain

.

Step 3) Let

Step 4) Stop.

606

D. Comparative Results

In order to judge which robustness measures should be

adopted for evaluating robustness of a given fuzzy reasoning

method, we perform Monte Carlo simulation according to the

following algorithm.

Simulation Algorithm 7:

Step 1) Generate 500 pairs of fuzzy relations and fuzzy

at random

premises

as follows, where

. For each

and

are

each generated in accordance with the uniform

probability distribution dened over the interval

.

Step 2) For each pair

, perform Simulation Algorithm 1 and obtain

. Let

.

, perform Simulation AlStep 3) For each pair

gorithm 3 and obtain

. Let

.

, perform Simulation AlStep 4) For each pair

gorithm 5 and obtain

. Let

.

Step 5) Stop.

Example 3.1: Consider the following fuzzy relation:

Further, let

.

Performing Simulation Algorithm 5, we obtain

. Suppose we ignore the contribution of the perturbations of fuzzy relations; then we obtain [refer to Step 6) of Simulation Algorithm 5]

premises; then we obtain [refer to Step 6) of Simulation Algorithm 5]

sensitive to perturbations of fuzzy relations than to those of

fuzzy premises. In order to improve robustness of fuzzy reasoning, more attention should be paid to how to attenuate perturbations of fuzzy relations. Further, 123.6383 is close to 117.

2968. The contribution of the perturbations of fuzzy premises

to the robustness measure becomes marginal if the contribution

of the perturbations of fuzzy relations is considered.

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TABLE II

ROBUSTNESS MEASURES OF OPTIMAL FUZZY REASONING METHOD =

robustness measures by performing Simulation Algorithm 7 for

and

are

three times (trials 1, 2, and 3). The values of

. As

close to each other, which are both much greater than

far as robustness of fuzzy reasoning is concerned, the perturbations of fuzzy relations are much more important than those of

fuzzy premises. This coincides with the observation presented

in Example 3.1.

IV. EMBEDDING FEEDBACK MECHANISMS INTO OPTIMAL

FUZZY REASONING

Our previous work has shown that optimal fuzzy reasoning

methods may be more robust than the CRI method [32], [33].

However, in the optimal fuzzy reasoning methods presented in

our previous work, as in the CRI method, it is implicitly assumed

that the fuzzy relation incorporates all the information underlying the fuzzy rules. keeps invariant during the process of

fuzzy reasoning. All new fuzzy premises are individually applied to with the understanding that the possible correlations

among different fuzzy premises should not impose constraints

on the resulting correlations among the resulting fuzzy consequences when the resulting fuzzy consequences are dened or

derived. The history of fuzzy reasoning makes no contribution to

the subsequent steps of inference in the fuzzy reasoning process.

Errors in must invariantly be transferred to each single new

fuzzy consequence. The capability for to attenuate the errors

in the new fuzzy premises is not improved as the fuzzy reasoning

is supposed to

process proceeds. This is undesirable since

mimic the process of human reasoning whose capability should

be improved as the reasoning process proceeds.

In order to improve the robustness of optimal fuzzy reasoning,

in this section we postulate that sequences of fuzzy premises and

their perturbations are not completely irrelevant. Rather, they

may be correlated to some extent. New fuzzy premises and their

perturbations convey useful information that should be incorporated into the initial fuzzy relation for later fuzzy reasoning.

That is, the fuzzy relation adopted in the fuzzy reasoning process

should not only incorporate the information of the given fuzzy

rules in terms of but also incorporate that of the new fuzzy

rules given by the new fuzzy premises and the new fuzzy consequences generated during the process of fuzzy reasoning. In this

way, the fuzzy relation adopted in the fuzzy reasoning process

is no longer invariant. Rather, it is a function of the history of

fuzzy reasoning. A feedback mechanism is explicitly embedded

into the process of fuzzy reasoning with the expectation that the

robustness of fuzzy reasoning is improved.

Several reasons explain why perturbations or errors may be

associated with the fuzzy relation and the new fuzzy premise

and why feedback mechanisms can help to attenuate these

errors.

overdemanding for human experts to accurately determine

what the corresponding fuzzy rules should be and how

many fuzzy rules are required. Actually, extraction results

depend on the underlying domains and goals. An identical

fuzzy premise may have different fuzzy consequence for

different application domains for different goal. As stated

in Section I, a more comprehensive form of fuzzy rule

for human expertise is to comprise three distinct parts: IF

fuzzy premise THEN fuzzy consequence FOR fuzzy goal.

The existing form of fuzzy rule (IF fuzzy premise THEN

fuzzy consequence) is an approximation of the more comprehensive form of fuzzy rule. This naturally results in

errors in fuzzy rules given in the form IF fuzzy premise

THEN fuzzy consequence.

2) Even if human expertise can exactly be given in the form

IF fuzzy premise THEN fuzzy consequence, the corresponding membership functions for the required fuzzy or

linguistic variables can hardly be determined accurately.

Actually, this was the basic motivation for our previous

work on the robustness analysis of fuzzy reasoning in terms

of -equalities of fuzzy sets [26], [29]. Further, human expertise does not specify how various parts of fuzzy rules

should be composed into a single fuzzy relation . There

is a variety of connectives or operators that can be adopted

to make up the fuzzy relation . Further, discretization

of continuous universes often leads to substantial errors

in fuzzy systems modeling [35]. It is highly questionable

that a single fuzzy relation can accurately capture all the

information conveyed by the given fuzzy rules. More reasonably, the given fuzzy rules should be transferred into a

.

single fuzzy relation with an associated error

3) Precise approximation or description of a given nonlinear

function or human expertise with multiple inputs and multiple outputs may require a large number of fuzzy rules and

lead to curse of dimensionality. Several methods are available to reduce large rule base to a small number of fuzzy

associated with the resulting fuzzy relarules [36].

associated with the resulting fuzzy

tion as well as

premise is incurred.

4) Besides human expertise, fuzzy rules can serve as a pure

fuzzy system with fuzzy inputs and fuzzy outputs and be

extracted from observation data. This has been studied extensively in the literature, and a large variety of methods is

available to extract fuzzy rules from observation data [20].

However, noises and outliers are often associated with the

observation data, which result in errors in fuzzy premises

and fuzzy rules [37].

5) By embedding feedback mechanisms into fuzzy reasoning, it is expected that robustness against errors in

fuzzy premises and fuzzy rules would become an intrinsic

attribute of fuzzy reasoning. Consider errors in fuzzy

607

reasoning be sensitive to large errors in fuzzy premises

and insensitive to small errors. However, a given fuzzy

relation adopted in the fuzzy reasoning process can hardly

satisfy these two different or even conicting requirements. Suppose that errors in fuzzy premises are predicted

on the basis of the history of fuzzy reasoning; then the

fuzzy relation adopted in the process of fuzzy reasoning

can be dynamically adjusted to satisfy the robustness

requirement. For errors in fuzzy rules or fuzzy relation

, if the history of fuzzy reasoning is used to adjust the

fuzzy relation online, then the errors are dispersed over

the initial fuzzy relation as well as the history of fuzzy

reasoning and become less crucial than otherwise.

Now the problem is how to embed feedback mechanisms

into fuzzy reasoning or how to dynamically adjust the fuzzy

by using the history of fuzzy reasoning. Here we

relation

follow a simple idea. An extra fuzzy relation

is dynamically generated by using the latest pairs of fuzzy premises

and fuzzy consequences. This extra fuzzy relation is then united

to make up an overall fuzzy relawith the fuzzy relation

tion for optimal fuzzy reasoning. More specically, suppose

has incorporated the information of the fuzzy rules given a priori. Further suppose that fuzzy premise

is given

for fuzzy reasoning at time , with the resulting fuzzy conse. Let

quence being

be the corresponding fuzzy relaand . See (4.1) at the bottom of the

tion that incorporates

incorporates the information of the latest fuzzy repage.

lations if any. The overall fuzzy relation adopted in the process

of fuzzy reasoning is

(4.2)

replaces the initial

for optimal fuzzy reasoning. Given

fuzzy premise

at time 1, the corresponding fuzzy concan be determined by using according to the

sequence

optimal fuzzy reasoning method presented in Section II.

and

are then used to make up

that updates

and

accordingly. An explicit feedback mechanism is embedded

into the process of fuzzy reasoning.

and a single fuzzy

Note that given the fuzzy relation

premise , the fuzzy reasoning method presented in Section II

generates a single fuzzy consequence . The method is a mapping from the universe of single fuzzy premises to the universe

of single fuzzy consequences. However, for the fuzzy reasoning

method with the feedback mechanism presented in this section,

it does not make sense to state that a single fuzzy premise

generates a single fuzzy consequence individually. Rather,

it should be stated that a single sequence of fuzzy premises

if

if

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(4.1)

608

. The new fuzzy reasoning

consequences

method is a mapping from the universe of sequences of fuzzy

premises to the universe of sequences of fuzzy consequences.

is viewed as a special

Alternatively, if

group form of fuzzy premises, then it can be said that the new

method is a method of group fuzzy reasoning that generates a

group of fuzzy consequences for a group of fuzzy premises.

Overall, the new method for optimal fuzzy reasoning with the

feedback mechanism can be summarized in the following.

BEGIN

Step 1) Let

Step 2) Initialize the parameter , the fuzzy relation , the

rst fuzzy premise , and the given stopping criterion of fuzzy reasoning process

Step 3) Let

Step 4) Determine the fuzzy consequence

corresponding

by using the optimal fuzzy reasoning method

to

(presented in Section II), or

Step 5) Obtain the extra fuzzy relation

and the overall

fuzzy relation according to (4.1) and (4.2)

Step 6) If the given stopping criterion of fuzzy reasoning

process is satised, go to Step 11)

Step 7) Let

Step 8) Obtain fuzzy premise

at time

Step 9) Determine the fuzzy consequence

corresponding

to

by using the optimal fuzzy reasoning method

presented in Section 2, or

Step 10) Go to Step 5)

Step 11) Stop

END

The given stopping criterion of fuzzy reasoning process can

be in various forms. An example form is that the process of

fuzzy reasoning is stopped upon

. Another example

criterion is that the process of fuzzy reasoning is stopped upon

threshold, that is, the distance between and

being beyond a given threshold. On the other hand, denitions

other than (4.1) and (4.2) can be employed for

and . For

example, can be constructed in such a way that the fuzzy

rules are selectively or conditionally red, based on the history

of fuzzy reasoning. That is, other feedback mechanisms can also

be introduced. Further, is a parameter that should be chosen a

priori. How should be chosen or how it can affect the performance of the fuzzy reasoning method presented in this section is

a research topic that deserves future investigation. On the other

hand, we set

, and this implies that the entries of

are always greater than the corresponding ones of . Operators

other than union can be considered in the future. Of course, we

note that

does not imply that the fuzzy reasoning

process can only increase the values in the matrix since

does not keep invariant in the fuzzy reasoning process.

Incorporating optimization and feedback mechanisms into

the fuzzy reasoning process is partially aimed to improve the robustness of the fuzzy reasoning process. However, there is risk

, which in turn magnify

that the errors in result in errors in

rather than attenuate the errors in by incorporating

into .

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in the next section tend to demonstrate that the optimization and

feedback mechanisms can really improve the robustness of the

fuzzy reasoning process. Further, a possible measure to circumvent this risk is to include some kind of weighting coefcients

in the optimization function that may lter possible noises associated with .

A related question is whether the introduced feedback mechanism can improve or impair the accuracy of the fuzzy reasoning process. From an extreme perspective, there is no answer for this question. This is because no correct fuzzy consequence is known or assumed for any given fuzzy premise,

no matter what a fuzzy reasoning method may be. However,

we can say that the fuzzy reasoning method proposed in this

paper is more accurate that the CRI method in the sense that

the cost function of (2.1) is minimized. The accuracy of fuzzy

reasoning can be also judged on the basis of other criteria. For

example, a set of heuristic rules can be introduced to judge if

a fuzzy reasoning method demonstrates reasonable or desirable

. An example heuristic

performance. Suppose

for a desirable fuzzy reasoning

rule asserts that

method . On the other hand, a fuzzy reasoning method can

be applied to modeling and control of complex systems, and

this offers another setting for accuracy analysis of the fuzzy

reasoning method. Obviously, the accuracy problem denes another research topic that should be investigated in the future for

the fuzzy reasoning method proposed in this paper. First, the

accuracy problem or properties need to be formulated or dened. Secondly, the accuracy properties should be incorporated

into the optimization function of the fuzzy reasoning process.

Finally, a desirable fuzzy reasoning method that optimizes the

given (objective) function is derived.

Note that serves as the overall fuzzy rule base that is dynamically updated in the fuzzy reasoning process. New fuzzy

rules are generated online to replace some of existing fuzzy rules

). Similar ideas can be observed in the literature. There

(in

are several manners to dynamically adjust fuzzy rules or their effects, including updating the fuzzy rule base, updating the fuzzy

set denitions, and/or updating the scaling factors [38]. For example, in the self-organizing controller of Mamdani, a performance monitor is adopted to update the underlying fuzzy rules

[39]. In the navigation control of robot, fuzzy rules are selectively red from the fuzzy rule base in response to changes of

the robots environment [40]. In [41], fuzzy membership functions are updated online. In the fuzzy system with dynamic rule

base, the scaling factor for the underlying universes of discourse

is dynamically adjusted according to the system input [36]. In

fuzzy system identication, the underlying fuzzy rules are continually updated as new observed data arrive [20]. However, all

these ideas are based on the assumption that an additional plant

is available. The fuzzy rules are updated in accordance with the

responses of the plant. The dynamics of the plant is involved. On

the other hand, the idea presented in this section does not rely

on external plants. The fuzzy rule base is updated in accordance

with the history of fuzzy premises and fuzzy consequences. No

external dynamics is required. If we treat the feedback loop from

the plant to fuzzy rule base as an outer one (as observed in the

literature), then the feedback loop presented in this section can

be treated as an inner loop. These two loops should be complementary rather than conicting.

Similar differences can be observed between the feedback

mechanism presented in this section and those incorporated in

fuzzy neural networks that implement fuzzy reasoning. In the

adaptive-network-based fuzzy inference system (ANFIS) [42],

the network is updated by using a hybrid learning algorithm

to t crisp-in crisp-out data pairs. The feedback to the network occurs as new data pairs are given. In the compensatory

neurofuzzy systems [43], crisp-in crisp-out data pairs are

employed to dynamically rene the fuzzy operators adopted in

the networks. In [44], a new adaptive fuzzy inference neural

network (AFINN) is proposed to model crisp-in crisp-out

data pairs. The underlying feedback mechanism is similar to

that of ANFIS. There are two major differences in feedback

mechanism between these works and the one presented in

this section. First, these fuzzy neural networks serve as a

modeling formalism for crisp-in crisp-out data pairs, whereas

the fuzzy reasoning formalism presented in this section can

handle fuzzy-in fuzzy-out data pairs. Secondly, the feedback

loop occurs in the neural networks as learning algorithms are

employed to train the networks. However, the feedback mechanism in the fuzzy reasoning formalism presented in this section

is intrinsic in the sense that no learning algorithms are invoked.

On the other hand, the feedback mechanisms incorporated

in recurrent neural networks can be treated as intrinsic since

they link outputs of a recurrent neural network or the neurons

thereof backward to the inputs of the neural network or other

neurons thereof [45]. The recurrent neural networks are mainly

devoted to crisp-in crisp-out data pairs. The fuzzied radial

basis function networks proposed in [46] can handle fuzzy-in

fuzzy-out data pairs and do nonlinear regression analysis.

No intrinsic feedback mechanisms are involved in them. The

most related work should be the fuzzied recurrent neural

fuzzy network that can handle fuzzy-in fuzzy-out data pairs

[47]. However, the fuzzy reasoning formalism presented in

this section distinguishes itself from the fuzzied recurrent

neural fuzzy network in several aspects. First, the feedback

mechanism presented in this section is explicitly expressed

in terms of fuzzy rules. This makes it intuitively interpreted.

Secondly, no learning algorithms are involved in the feedback

mechanism presented in this section, and thus the potential

weaknesses of learning algorithms are avoided. Lastly, fuzzy

reasoning is treated as a control problem, which leads to the

triple ingredients perspective of fuzzy reasoning as will be

discussed in Section VI.

V. SIMULATION RESULTS

Denote the fuzzy reasoning method presented in Section IV

. Recall that can denote the fuzzy reasoning method preas

is more robust

sented in Section II. Now we need to judge if

than . If the answer is positive, then we can say that feedback

mechanisms do improve the robustness of fuzzy reasoning. Following the observation of Section III that the contribution of the

perturbations of fuzzy premises to the robustness measure becomes marginal if the contribution of the perturbations of fuzzy

relations is considered, here we consider perturbations of fuzzy

premises and those of fuzzy relations individually.

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609

An essential difference between (without feedback mech(with feedback mechanism) is that the former

anism) and

maps single fuzzy premises to single fuzzy premises individually, whereas the latter maps sequences of fuzzy premises to

sequences of fuzzy consequences. Symbolically, we can denote

. This makes

robustness evaluation of

different from that proposed in

Section III-A. Instead of considering a robustness measure with

respect to a pair of fuzzy relation and a single fuzzy premise

, we need to rst consider a robustness measure with respect

to a pair of fuzzy relation and a sequence of fuzzy premises

. This leads to the following algorithm.

Simulation Algorithm 8:

corStep 1) Obtain the fuzzy consequence

responding to the fuzzy premise

with fuzzy relation

in accordance with

with parameter

; that is,

.

Step 2) Generate 20 sequences of random numbers,

,

taking values in the interval ( 1/40, 1/40)

with

in accordance with a uniform probability distribution.

Step 3) Let

if

if

if

Step 4) Let

.

Step 5) Obtain the fuzzy consequence

corresponding to the fuzzy premise

with

with paramfuzzy relation in accordance with

, or

eter

.

Step 6) Calculate

where

Step 7) Stop.

In the above, 20 trials of simulation are actually conducted. In each trial, a robustness measure

is calculated.

The average of these values is then treated as the robustness

with respect to

and

. Of

index of

course, more trials can be conducted. Note that

reduces to

610

TABLE III

ROBUSTNESS MEASURES OF DIFFERENT FUZZY REASONING METHODS

AGAINST PERTURBATIONS OF FUZZY PREMISES

if

. Therefore, the above algorithm is also applicable

for evaluating robustness of for a given pair of fuzzy relation

and the sequence of fuzzy premises

. The

corresponding output is

. In this

way, we can employ the following algorithm to evaluate and

and

against perturbations of

compare robustness of

fuzzy premises.

Simulation Algorithm 9:

Step 1) Generate 20 pairs of fuzzy relations and sequences

of fuzzy premises

at random as follows, where

.

For each

and

are each generated in accordance with the uniform probability distribution dened over the interval

.

, perStep 2) For each pair

form Simulation Algorithm 8 for

and obtain

Step 2) Generate

20

sets

of

random

numbers,

,

taking values in the interval

with

in accordance with a uniform

probability distribution.

Step 3) Let

if

if

if

Step 4) Let

.

Step 5) Obtain the fuzzy consequence

corresponding to the fuzzy premise

in accordance with

fuzzy relation

rameter

with

with pa-

.

Step 6) Calculate

. Let

.

Step 3) For each pair

Algorithm 8 for

obtain

. Let

, perform Simulation

(with parameter

) and

.

Step 4) Stop.

Example 5.1: Simulation Algorithm 9 was performed for

three times (trials 1, 2, and 3). Table III tabulates the resulting

is about half of

.

robustness measures. We can see that

This implies that the optimal fuzzy reasoning method

with

the feedback mechanism is much more robust against perturbations of fuzzy premises than the optimal fuzzy reasoning method

without a feedback mechanism. Feedback mechanisms do improve the robustness of fuzzy reasoning.

B. Robustness Against Perturbations of Fuzzy Relations

Similar to Simulation Algorithm 8, we can have the following

algorithm to evaluate the robustness of the fuzzy reasoning

method

against the perturbations of fuzzy relations with

respect to a given pair of fuzzy relation and the sequence of

.

fuzzy premises

Simulation Algorithm 10:

Step 1) Obtain the fuzzy consequence

corresponding to the fuzzy premise

with

with paramfuzzy relation in accordance with

eter

.

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where

Step 7) Stop.

reduces to if

, the above algorithm is

Since

for a given

also applicable for evaluating robustness of

pair of fuzzy relation

and the sequence of fuzzy

premises

. The corresponding output is

. In this way, we can employ the

following algorithm to evaluate and compare robustness of

and

against perturbations of fuzzy relations. Here we

note that

is evaluated in comparison with . No other

existing fuzzy reasoning methods including the CRI method

are considered. This is because our previous work has shown

that is more robust than the CRI method [32].

Simulation Algorithm 11:

Step 1) Generate 20 pairs of fuzzy relations and

sequences of fuzzy premises

at random as

follows, where

. For each

and

are

each generated in accordance with the uniform

611

TABLE IV

ROBUSTNESS MEASURES OF DIFFERENT FUZZY REASONING METHODS

AGAINST PERTURBATIONS OF FUZZY RELATIONS

.

Step 2) For each pair

, perand obtain

form Simulation Algorithm 10 for

. Let

Step 3) For each pair

Algorithm 10 for

.

, perform Simulation

and obtain

. Let

actual air temperature in the room. The air conditioner and the

air in the room constitute a closed-loop feedback control system.

A closed-loop feedback system reduces to an open-loop control

system if no output signals or state information are used by the

controller to deliver control signals.

Besides the controlled object and the controller, a third ingredient for a control system is the underlying control goals and/or

constraints. The rst control goal is concerned with stability of

the control system. The air temperature under the control of the

air conditioner should be stable rather than tend to grow without

an upper bound. The second control goal is to achieve desirable

performance of the control system. The air temperature should

not uctuate overdramatically. The time to achieve the desired

air temperature should be reasonably small. The overshoot of

the air temperature should not be overly large. In the context of

optimal control, the control performance may be expressed as a

functional such as

(6.1)

denotes the state vector of the controlled object at

where

its transpose,

the control signal vector

. time and

matrices of appropriate dimensions, and

at time

Step 4) Stop.

Example 5.2: Simulation Algorithm 11 was performed for the terminal or nal time of concern. The corresponding control

three times (trials 1, 2, and 3). Table IV tabulates the resulting goal is to minimize the objective functional .

Control constraints may also be imposed. For example, there

is about a third of

. The feedrobustness measures.

should be an upper bound for the switching frequency of actidramatically improves the robustness

back mechanism in

of fuzzy reasoning. Recalling the results presented in Example vation/stopping of the outdoor condensing unit of an air condi5.1, we can see that the feedback mechanism is more effective tioner. The corresponding control signals cannot follow an arbito attenuate the perturbations of fuzzy relations than to attenuate trary law. In summary, a control system contains three distinct

classes of ingredients: controlled objects, controllers, and conthose of fuzzy premises.

trol goals/constraints.

With the triple ingredients perspective of control, we can reexamine various fuzzy reasoning methods, including those preVI. A CONTROL-THEORETIC PERSPECTIVE

sented in Sections II and IV. For the CRI method, each single

OF FUZZY REASONING

fuzzy premise generates a single fuzzy consequence, and no

Recall that in control engineering, a control system consists other fuzzy premises or fuzzy consequences are involved. The

of at least a controlled object and a controller [34], as depicted in fuzzy premise is applied to the underlying fuzzy rule base. Then

Fig. 1. The controller accepts input signals and delivers control the fuzzy rule base can be viewed as the controlled object and

signals to the controlled object. The output signals are often used the CRI method as the corresponding controller. The fuzzy rule

by the controller to deliver new control signals and thus make up base and the CRI method constitutes an open-loop reasoning

a feedback loop from the controlled object to the controller. For system, as depicted in Fig. 2. However, the underlying control

example, consider an air conditioner installed in a room.3 The or reasoning goals/constraints are not explicitly stated.

air in the room and compressor in the air conditioner serve as

presented in

The optimal fuzzy reasoning method

the controlled object, and the control clip in the air conditioner Section II also corresponds to an open-loop control system.

serves as the controller. The input signal is an expected voltage However, the reasoning goal is given in terms of (2.1), which

according to desired air temperature (e.g., 23 C) designed by species an objective function for each single reasoning step.

users. The output signal is the actual air temperature in the room. This contrasts with the global objective function given in

The feedback information is gained by the temperature sensor

(6.1), which takes account of the whole process of control

(reasoning). The fuzzy rule base serves as the rst ingredient of

3The description presented here is oversimplifying and inaccurate. It is only

fuzzy reasoning, the reasoning method serves as the second

for an explanation of the concept of feedback control.

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612

ingredient of fuzzy reasoning, and the reasoning goals/constraints serve as the third ingredient of fuzzy reasoning. Instead

of dening a reasoning method a priori, a theory of fuzzy

reasoning should guide how to synthesize the desired reasoning

method to achieve or satisfy given reasoning goals/constraints.

This is partially exemplied in the optimal fuzzy reasoning

method . However, no feedback mechanisms are explicitly

involved in since the objective function given in (2.1) is local

rather than global.

presented in Section V inThe optimal fuzzy reasoning

volves an explicit feedback mechanism and corresponds to a

closed-loop reasoning system as depicted in Fig. 3. The rst

two ingredients of fuzzy reasoning are the same as those for

the reasoning method . Equation (2.1) still species a reasoning goal for the reasoning process. However, an additional

reasoning goal is to improve the robustness of the fuzzy reasoning process. The underlying robustness measures given in

Section III are global in nature in the sense that they take account

of the whole reasoning process. In this way, it is a reasonable

result to embed an explicit feedback mechanism into the reasoning process. On the other hand, it should be noted that how

to synthesize the required feedback mechanisms that guarantee

the desired goals of reasoning robustness is an open problem.

presented in Section IV, the

In the fuzzy reasoning method

reasoning results of the latest reasoning steps are employed

as feedback information. This only species one possible form

of feedback mechanisms. An alternative form is to employ the

reasoning result of a single reasoning step in the history of reasoning that is closest to the fuzzy relation . Multiple criteria

can be adopted to identify the required feedback information in

the reasoning process, depending on the underlying reasoning

goals/constraints.

No matter whether an explicit feedback mechanism is employed, the preceding discussions suggest that fuzzy reasoning

can be treated as a control problem. The underlying three ingredients should be explicitly identied. A sound theory of fuzzy

reasoning should clearly formulate the possible relationships

among the three distinct ingredients of fuzzy reasoning.

Treating fuzzy reasoning as a control problem opens a new

arena for applying various control principles of feedback control and optimization to fuzzy reasoning in particular and reasoning in general. For example, robust control is concerned with

how to analyze and synthesize a single controller that guarantees the required stability and performance for an uncertain

class of controlled objects in the presence of input/output noises

[48]. As a counterpart to robust control, we can talk about robust reasoning. A robust reasoning method should guarantee the

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required reasoning robustness even if perturbations are associated with the underlying rule bases and premises. On the other

hand, adaptive control is concerned with how to dynamically

adapt the controllers to accommodate the underlying changes

occurring to the controlled objects online [49]. The principles of

adaptive control should lead to adaptive reasoning that adjusts

the required reasoning methods to accommodate the underlying

changes occurring to the knowledge bases during reasoning. Of

course, optimal fuzzy reasoning can serve as the optimal control counterpart in fuzzy reasoning and should be further investigated.

Another direction to extend the underlying principle (treating

fuzzy reasoning as a control problem) of the reasoning methods

and

is to apply various control principles of feedback control and optimization to classical logical inferences. Here we

, no logical lannote that in the reasoning methods and

guages are involved. They are not based on logic and cannot be

treated as an extended form of logical inference. However, this

does not mean that the triple ingredients perspective cannot be

applied to logical inference. For a logical system, the underlying

axioms and the given knowledge base can serve as a controlled

object, and the reasoning method can serve as the corresponding

controller. Suppose a reasoning goal can be identied a priori to

serve as the third ingredient of reasoning; then the resulting reasoning process generates a consequence for each given premise.

The consequence is not only a function of the axioms, the given

knowledge, and the premise but also a function of underlying

reasoning goals/constraints. This should lead to new logics that

are dramatically different from various logics that ignore the underlying reasoning goals/constraints.

VII. CONCLUDING REMARKS

Robustness of fuzzy reasoning is concerned with the effects

of perturbations associated with given fuzzy rule bases and/or

fuzzy premises on fuzzy consequences. This problem is important since fuzzy rule bases can hardly be extracted from human

expertise or observation data accurately, and quantifying fuzzy

premises inevitably incurs errors. Our previous work shows that

the popular Zadeh CRI method of fuzzy reasoning is not as

robust as desirable, and the optimal fuzzy reasoning methods,

which generates fuzzy consequences for given fuzzy premises

such that given objective functions are minimized or optimized,

may be more robust. Inspired by the idea in control engineering

that feedback may help to attenuate the uncertainty associated

with the controlled object and the noises associated with the inputs/outputs, in the preceding sections we treat fuzzy reasoning

as a control problem and embed feedback mechanisms into optimal fuzzy reasoning methods to further improve the robustness

of fuzzy reasoning. More specically, the given fuzzy rule base

serves as the controlled object, and the fuzzy reasoning method

serves as the corresponding controller. The fuzzy rule base and

the reasoning method constitute a control system, which may be

open-loop or closed-loop, to achieve or satisfy given reasoning

goals/constraints. The fuzzy rule base, the reasoning methods,

and the reasoning goals/constraints specify the three distinct ingredients of fuzzy reasoning. In the preceding sections, a new

fuzzy reasoning method with an explicit feedback mechanism

is proposed and evaluated. The fuzzy consequence obtained in

a specic reasoning step is not only a function of the underlying

fuzzy rule base and the fuzzy premise applied in the reasoning

step but also a function of the history of fuzzy reasoning. It is

also a function of reasoning goal of concern. The new fuzzy

reasoning method is a mapping from the universe of sequences

of fuzzy premises to the universe of sequences of fuzzy consequences rather than from the universe of single fuzzy premises

to the universe of single fuzzy consequences. The Monte Carlo

simulation shows that the new fuzzy reasoning method is much

more robust than the optimal fuzzy reasoning methods, and the

feedback mechanism does signicantly improve the robustness

of fuzzy reasoning. The work presented in this paper sets a

new starting point to develop a sound theory of fuzzy reasoning

that formulates the relationships among the three ingredients

of fuzzy reasoning. It also offers new opportunity for various

principles of feedback control and optimization to be applied

in fuzzy reasoning in particular, and reasoning in general. New

forms of reasoning such as robust reasoning and adaptive reasoning can be explored in the future, in which logical or nonlogical languages can be adopted. Since a fuzzy reasoning method

actually denes a class of pure fuzzy systems that are different

from Mamdami fuzzy systems and T-S fuzzy systems, it can

be expected that the new fuzzy reasoning method presented in

this paper can be used for modeling and control of complex

systems and for decision-making under complex environments.

Applications of the ideas and methods presented in this paper to

real-world problems should be also explored in the future.

ACKNOWLEDGMENT

The valuable comments of the anonymous reviewers are

gratefully appreciated.

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Kai-Yuan Cai was born in April 1965. He received

the B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees from Beihang University (Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics), Beijing, China, in 1984, 1987, and 1991, respectively.

He is a Cheung Kong Scholar (Chair Professor)

jointly appointed by the Ministry of Education of

China and the Li Ka Shing Foundation of Hong

Kong in 1999. He has been a full Professor at

Beihang University since 1995. He was a Research

Fellow with the Centre for Software Reliability, City

Authorized licensd use limted to: IE Xplore. Downlade on May 10,2 at 19:438 UTC from IE Xplore. Restricon aply.

University, London, U.K., and a Visiting Scholar with the City University of

Hong Kong; Swinburge University of Technology, Australia; University of

Technology, Sydney, Australia; and Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN. He

has published more than 35 research papers in international journals and is the

author of Software Defect and Operational Prole Modeling (Boston, MA:

Kluwer, 1998), Introduction to Fuzzy Reliability (Boston, MA: Kluwer, 1996),

and Elements of Software Reliability Engineering [Beijing, China: Tshinghua

Univ. Press, 1995 (in Chinese)]. His main research interests include software

reliability and testing, intelligent systems and control, and software cybernetics.

He is a member of the Editorial Board of Fuzzy Sets and Systems and Editor of

the Kluwer International Series on Asian Studies in Computer and Information

Science. He was Program Committee Cochair for the Fifth International

Conference on Quality Software (Melbourne, Australia, September 2005), the

First International Workshop on Software Cybernetics (Hong Kong, September

2004), and the Second International Workshop on Software Cybernetics

(Edinburgh, UK, July 2005); and General Cochair for the Third International

Workshop on Software Cybernetics (Chicago, September 2006) and the Second

International Symposium on Service-Oriented System Engineering (Shanghai,

China, October 2006). He also was Guest Editor for Fuzzy Sets and Systems

(1996), the International Journal of Software Engineering and Knowledge

Engineering (2006), and the Journal of Systems and Software (2006).

He received the B.S. degree from NanKai University,

Tianjin, China, in 1999 and the Ph.D. degree from

Beihang University, Beijing, China, in 2005.

He has been doing postdoctoral work at Beihang

University, Beijing University of Aeronautics and

Astronautics, since 2005. His main research interests

include intelligent systems and control and fuzzy

sets and systems.

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