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Backtracking Algorithms for Disjunctions of Temporal Constraints
 Artificial Intelligence
, 1998
"... We extend the framework of simple temporal problems studied originally by Dechter, Meiri and Pearl to consider constraints of the form x1 \Gamma y1 r1 : : : xn \Gamma yn rn , where x1 : : : xn ; y1 : : : yn are variables ranging over the real numbers, r1 : : : rn are real constants, and n 1. W ..."
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Cited by 106 (2 self)
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We extend the framework of simple temporal problems studied originally by Dechter, Meiri and Pearl to consider constraints of the form x1 \Gamma y1 r1 : : : xn \Gamma yn rn , where x1 : : : xn ; y1 : : : yn are variables ranging over the real numbers, r1 : : : rn are real constants, and n 1. We have implemented four progressively more efficient algorithms for the consistency checking problem for this class of temporal constraints. We have partially ordered those algorithms according to the number of visited search nodes and the number of performed consistency checks. Finally, we have carried out a series of experimental results on the location of the hard region. The results show that hard problems occur at a critical value of the ratio of disjunctions to variables. This value is between 6 and 7. Introduction Reasoning with temporal constraints has been a hot research topic for the last fifteen years. The importance of this problem has been demonstrated in many areas of artifici...
Practical Applications of Constraint Programming
 CONSTRAINTS
, 1996
"... Constraint programming is newly flowering in industry. Several companies have recently started up to exploit the technology, and the number of industrial applications is now growing very quickly. This survey will seek, by examples, ..."
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Cited by 105 (1 self)
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Constraint programming is newly flowering in industry. Several companies have recently started up to exploit the technology, and the number of industrial applications is now growing very quickly. This survey will seek, by examples,
Problem Structure in the Presence of Perturbations
 In Proceedings of the 14th National Conference on AI
, 1997
"... Recent progress on search and reasoning procedures has been driven by experimentation on computationally hard problem instances. Hard random problem distributions are an important source of such instances. Challenge problems from the area of finite algebra have also stimulated research on searc ..."
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Cited by 72 (17 self)
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Recent progress on search and reasoning procedures has been driven by experimentation on computationally hard problem instances. Hard random problem distributions are an important source of such instances. Challenge problems from the area of finite algebra have also stimulated research on search and reasoning procedures. Nevertheless, the relation of such problems to practical applications is somewhat unclear. Realistic problem instances clearly have more structure than the random problem instances, but, on the other hand, they are not as regular as the structured mathematical problems. We propose a new benchmark domain that bridges the gap between the purely random instances and the highly structured problems, by introducing perturbations into a structured domain. We will show how to obtain interesting search problems in this manner, and how such problems can be used to study the robustness of search control mechanisms. Our experiments demonstrate that the performan...
On Forward Checking for Nonbinary Constraint Satisfaction
 ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE
, 1999
"... Solving nonbinary constraint satisfaction problems, a crucial challenge for the next years, can be tackled in two different ways: translating the nonbinary problem into an equivalent binary one, or extending binary search algorithms to solve directly the original problem. The latter option rai ..."
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Cited by 66 (4 self)
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Solving nonbinary constraint satisfaction problems, a crucial challenge for the next years, can be tackled in two different ways: translating the nonbinary problem into an equivalent binary one, or extending binary search algorithms to solve directly the original problem. The latter option raises some issues when we want to extend denitions written for the binary case. This paper focuses on the wellknown forward checking algorithm, and shows that it can be generalized to several nonbinary versions, all tting its binary denition. The classical version, proposed by Van Hentenryck, is only one of these generalizations.
Dynamic Variable Ordering In CSPs
, 1995
"... . We investigate the dynamic variable ordering (DVO) technique commonly used in conjunction with treesearch algorithms for solving constraint satisfaction problems. We first provide an implementation methodology for adding DVO to an arbitrary treesearch algorithm. Our methodology is applicable to ..."
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Cited by 57 (0 self)
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. We investigate the dynamic variable ordering (DVO) technique commonly used in conjunction with treesearch algorithms for solving constraint satisfaction problems. We first provide an implementation methodology for adding DVO to an arbitrary treesearch algorithm. Our methodology is applicable to a wide range of algorithms including those that maintain complicated information about the search history, like backmarking. We then investigate the popular reordering heuristic of next instantiating the variable with the minimum remaining values (MRV). We prove some interesting theorems about the MRV heuristic which demonstrate that if one wants to use the MRV heuristic one may as well use it with forward checking. Finally, we investigate the empirical performance of 12 different algorithms with and without DVO. Our experiments and theoretical results demonstrate that forward checking equipped with dynamic variable ordering is a very good algorithm for solving CSPs. 1 Introduction Despite ...
SmartClients: Constraint satisfaction as a Paradigm for Scaleable Intelligent Information Systems
, 2002
"... Many information systems are used in a problem solving context. Examples are travel planning systems, catalogs in electronic commerce, or agenda planning systems. They can be made more useful by integrating problemsolving capabilities into the information systems. This poses the challenge of scalea ..."
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Cited by 54 (18 self)
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Many information systems are used in a problem solving context. Examples are travel planning systems, catalogs in electronic commerce, or agenda planning systems. They can be made more useful by integrating problemsolving capabilities into the information systems. This poses the challenge of scaleability: when hundreds of users access a server at the same time, it is important to avoid excessive computational load.
Hybrid backtracking bounded by treedecomposition of constraint networks
 Artificial Intelligence
, 2003
"... We propose a framework for solving CSPs based both on backtracking techniques and on the notion of treedecomposition of the constraint networks. This mixed approach permits us to define a new framework for the enumeration, which we expect that it will benefit from the advantages of two approaches: ..."
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Cited by 51 (16 self)
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We propose a framework for solving CSPs based both on backtracking techniques and on the notion of treedecomposition of the constraint networks. This mixed approach permits us to define a new framework for the enumeration, which we expect that it will benefit from the advantages of two approaches: a practical efficiency of enumerative algorithms and a warranty of a limited time complexity by an approximation of the treewidth of the constraint networks. Finally, experimental results allow us to show the advantages of this approach. 1
A Survey of Tractable Constraint Satisfaction Problems
, 1997
"... In this report we discuss constraint satisfaction problems. These are problems in which values must be assigned to a collection of variables, subject to specified constraints. We focus specifically on problems in which the domain of possible values for each variable is finite. The report surveys the ..."
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Cited by 41 (5 self)
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In this report we discuss constraint satisfaction problems. These are problems in which values must be assigned to a collection of variables, subject to specified constraints. We focus specifically on problems in which the domain of possible values for each variable is finite. The report surveys the various conditions that have been shown to be sufficient to ensure tractability in these problems. These are broken down into three categories: ffl Conditions on the overall structure; ffl Conditions on the nature of the constraints; ffl Conditions on bounded pieces of the problem. 1 Introduction A constraint satisfaction problem is a way of expressing simultaneous requirements for values of variables. The study of constraint satisfaction problems was initiated by Montanari in 1974 [34], when he used them as a way of describing certain combinatorial problems arising in imageprocessing. It was quickly realised that the same general framework was applicable to a much wider class of probl...
Encodings of NonBinary Constraint Satisfaction Problems
, 1999
"... We perform a detailed theoretical and empirical comparison of the dual and hidden variable encodings of nonbinary constraint satisfaction problems. We identify a simple relationship between the two encodings by showing how we can translate between the two by composing or decomposing relations. ..."
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Cited by 41 (8 self)
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We perform a detailed theoretical and empirical comparison of the dual and hidden variable encodings of nonbinary constraint satisfaction problems. We identify a simple relationship between the two encodings by showing how we can translate between the two by composing or decomposing relations. This translation
Backjumpbased Backtracking for Constraint Satisfaction Problems
 Artificial Intelligence
, 2002
"... The performance of backtracking algorithms for solving finitedomain constraint satisfaction problems can be improved substantially by lookback and lookahead methods. Lookback techniques extract information by analyzing failing search paths that are terminated by deadends. Lookahead techniques ..."
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Cited by 37 (2 self)
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The performance of backtracking algorithms for solving finitedomain constraint satisfaction problems can be improved substantially by lookback and lookahead methods. Lookback techniques extract information by analyzing failing search paths that are terminated by deadends. Lookahead techniques use constraint propagation algorithms to avoid such deadends altogether. This survey describes a number of lookback variants including backjumping and constraint recording which recognize and avoid some unnecessary explorations of the search space. The last portion of the paper gives an overview of lookahead methods such as forward checking and dynamic variable ordering, and discusses their combination with backjumping.