Software agents are increasingly being used to represent humans in on-line auctions. Such agents have the advantages of being able to systematically monitor a wide variety of auctions and then make rapid decisions about what bids to place in what auctions. They can do this continuously and repetitively without losing concentration. To provide a means of evaluating and comparing (benchmarking) research methods in this area the Trading Agent Competition (TAC). This competition involves a number of agents bidding against one another in a number of related auctions (operating different protocols) to purchase travel packages for customers. Our agent, WhiteDolphin, is one of the most successful participants in the last two competitions.
We are now participating in a new competition , the CATallaxy competition (CAT) where the focus is on designing marketplaces.