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An inference procedure is a key component of the knowledge engineering process, sometimes known as abduction. After all preliminary information gathering and modeling is completed, queries are passed to the inference procedure to get answers. In this step, we let the inference procedure operate on the axioms and problem-specific facts to derive the information we are interested in knowing.

During this process, abduction is used to seek out assumptions which, when combined with a theory, can achieve some desired goal for the system without contradicting known facts. By seeking out more and more assumptions, worlds are generated with consistent (non-contradicting) knowledge.

For a formal description of abduction, go to abductive reasoning.

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