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265
Boosting combinatorial search through randomization
, 1998
"... Unpredictability in the running time of complete search procedures can often be explained by the phenomenon of “heavytailed cost distributions”, meaning that at any time during the experiment there is a nonnegligible probability of hitting a problem that requires exponentially more time to solve t ..."
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Cited by 315 (35 self)
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Unpredictability in the running time of complete search procedures can often be explained by the phenomenon of “heavytailed cost distributions”, meaning that at any time during the experiment there is a nonnegligible probability of hitting a problem that requires exponentially more time to solve than any that has been encountered before (Gomes et al. 1998a). We present a general method for introducing controlled randomization into complete search algorithms. The “boosted ” search methods provably eliminate heavytails to the right of the median. Furthermore, they can take advantage of heavytails to the left of the median (that is, a nonnegligible chance of very short runs) to dramatically shorten the solution time. We demonstrate speedups of several orders of magnitude for stateoftheart complete search procedures running on hard, realworld problems.
The Distributed Constraint Satisfaction Problem: Formalization and Algorithms
 IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering
, 1998
"... In this paper, we develop a formalism called a distributed constraint satisfaction problem (distributed CSP) and algorithms for solving distributed CSPs. A distributed CSP is a constraint satisfaction problem in which variables and constraints are distributed among multiple agents. Various applica ..."
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Cited by 270 (22 self)
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In this paper, we develop a formalism called a distributed constraint satisfaction problem (distributed CSP) and algorithms for solving distributed CSPs. A distributed CSP is a constraint satisfaction problem in which variables and constraints are distributed among multiple agents. Various application problems in Distributed Artificial Intelligence can be formalized as distributed CSPs. We present our newly developed technique called asynchronous backtracking that allows agents to act asynchronously and concurrently without any global control, while guaranteeing the completeness of the algorithm. Furthermore, we describe how the asynchronous backtracking algorithm can be modified into a more efficient algorithm called an asynchronous weakcommitment search, which can revise a bad decision without exhaustive search by changing the priority order of agents dynamically. The experimental results on various example problems show that the asynchronous weakcommitment search algorithm ...
Metaheuristics in combinatorial optimization: Overview and conceptual comparison
 ACM COMPUTING SURVEYS
, 2003
"... The field of metaheuristics for the application to combinatorial optimization problems is a rapidly growing field of research. This is due to the importance of combinatorial optimization problems for the scientific as well as the industrial world. We give a survey of the nowadays most important meta ..."
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Cited by 169 (14 self)
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The field of metaheuristics for the application to combinatorial optimization problems is a rapidly growing field of research. This is due to the importance of combinatorial optimization problems for the scientific as well as the industrial world. We give a survey of the nowadays most important metaheuristics from a conceptual point of view. We outline the different components and concepts that are used in the different metaheuristics in order to analyze their similarities and differences. Two very important concepts in metaheuristics are intensification and diversification. These are the two forces that largely determine the behaviour of a metaheuristic. They are in some way contrary but also complementary to each other. We introduce a framework, that we call the I&D frame, in order to put different intensification and diversification components into relation with each other. Outlining the advantages and disadvantages of different metaheuristic approaches we conclude by pointing out the importance of hybridization of metaheuristics as well as the integration of metaheuristics and other methods for optimization.
Improvements To Propositional Satisfiability Search Algorithms
, 1995
"... ... quickly across a wide range of hard SAT problems than any other SAT tester in the literature on comparable platforms. On a Sun SPARCStation 10 running SunOS 4.1.3 U1, POSIT can solve hard random 400variable 3SAT problems in about 2 hours on the average. In general, it can solve hard nvariable ..."
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Cited by 161 (0 self)
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... quickly across a wide range of hard SAT problems than any other SAT tester in the literature on comparable platforms. On a Sun SPARCStation 10 running SunOS 4.1.3 U1, POSIT can solve hard random 400variable 3SAT problems in about 2 hours on the average. In general, it can solve hard nvariable random 3SAT problems with search trees of size O(2 n=18:7 ). In addition to justifying these claims, this dissertation describes the most significant achievements of other researchers in this area, and discusses all of the widely known general techniques for speeding up SAT search algorithms. It should be useful to anyone interested in NPcomplete problems or combinatorial optimization in general, and it should be particularly useful to researchers in either Artificial Intelligence or Operations Research.
SymmetryBreaking Predicates for Search Problems
, 1996
"... Many reasoning and optimization problems exhibit symmetries. Previous work has shown how special purpose algorithms can make use of these symmetries to simplify reasoning. We present a general scheme whereby symmetries are exploited by adding "symmetrybreaking" predicates to the theory. Our a ..."
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Cited by 159 (0 self)
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Many reasoning and optimization problems exhibit symmetries. Previous work has shown how special purpose algorithms can make use of these symmetries to simplify reasoning. We present a general scheme whereby symmetries are exploited by adding "symmetrybreaking" predicates to the theory. Our approach
A Theoretical Evaluation of Selected Backtracking Algorithms
 Artificial Intelligence
, 1997
"... In recent years, many new backtracking algorithms for solving constraint satisfaction problems have been proposed. The algorithms are usually evaluated by empirical testing. This method, however, has its limitations. Our paper adopts a di erent, purely theoretical approach, which is based on charact ..."
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Cited by 115 (3 self)
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In recent years, many new backtracking algorithms for solving constraint satisfaction problems have been proposed. The algorithms are usually evaluated by empirical testing. This method, however, has its limitations. Our paper adopts a di erent, purely theoretical approach, which is based on characterizations of the sets of search treenodes visited by the backtracking algorithms. A notion of inconsistency between instantiations and variables is introduced, and is shown to be a useful tool for characterizing such wellknown concepts as backtrack, backjump, and domain annihilation. The characterizations enable us to: (a) prove the correctness of the algorithms, and (b) partially order the algorithms according to two standard performance measures: the number of nodes visited, and the number of consistency checks performed. Among other results, we prove the correctness of Backjumping and Con ictDirected Backjumping, and show that Forward Checking never visits more nodes than Backjumping. Our approach leads us also to propose a modi cation to two hybrid backtracking algorithms, Backmarking with Backjumping (BMJ) and Backmarking with Con ictDirected Backjumping (BMCBJ), so that they always perform fewer consistency checks than the original algorithms. 1
Nogood Recording for Static and Dynamic Constraint Satisfaction Problems
 International Journal of Artificial Intelligence Tools
, 1993
"... Many AI synthesis problems such as planning, scheduling or design may be encoded in a constraint satisfaction problem (CSP). A CSP is typically defined as the problem of finding any consistent labeling for a fixed set of variables satisfying all given constraints between these variables. However, fo ..."
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Cited by 111 (5 self)
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Many AI synthesis problems such as planning, scheduling or design may be encoded in a constraint satisfaction problem (CSP). A CSP is typically defined as the problem of finding any consistent labeling for a fixed set of variables satisfying all given constraints between these variables. However, for many real tasks, the set of constraints to consider may evolve because of the environment or because of user interactions. The problem we consider here is the solution maintenance problem in such a dynamic CSP (DCSP). We propose a new class of constraint recording algorithms called Nogood Recording that may be used for solving both static and dynamic CSPs. It offers an interesting compromise, polynomially bounded in space, between an ATMSlike approach and the usual static constraint satisfaction algorithms. 1 Introduction The constraint satisfaction problem (CSP) model is widely used to represent and solve various AI related problems and provides fundamental tools in areas such as truth...
Building decision procedures for modal logics from propositional decision procedures  The case study of modal K(m)
, 1996
"... The goal of this paper is to propose a new technique for developing decision procedures for propositional modal logics. The basic idea is that propositional modal decision procedures should be developed on top of propositional decision procedures. As a case study, we consider satisfiability in m ..."
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Cited by 95 (29 self)
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The goal of this paper is to propose a new technique for developing decision procedures for propositional modal logics. The basic idea is that propositional modal decision procedures should be developed on top of propositional decision procedures. As a case study, we consider satisfiability in modal K(m), that is modal K with m modalities, and develop an algorithm, called Ksat, on top of an implementation of the DavisPutnamLongemannLoveland procedure. Ksat is thoroughly tested and compared with various procedures and in particular with the stateoftheart tableaubased system Kris. The experimental results show that Ksat outperforms Kris and the other systems of orders of magnitude, highlight an intrinsic weakness of tableaubased decision procedures, and provide partial evidence of a phase transition phenomenon for K(m).
Bridging the gap between planning and scheduling
 Knowledge Engineering Review
"... Planning research in Artificial Intelligence (AI) has often focused on problems where there are cascading levels of action choice and complex interactions between actions. In contrast, Scheduling research has focused on much larger problems where there is little action choice, but the resulting orde ..."
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Cited by 94 (9 self)
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Planning research in Artificial Intelligence (AI) has often focused on problems where there are cascading levels of action choice and complex interactions between actions. In contrast, Scheduling research has focused on much larger problems where there is little action choice, but the resulting ordering problem is hard. In this paper, we give an overview of AI planning and scheduling techniques, focusing on their similarities, differences, and limitations. We also argue that many difficult practical problems lie somewhere between planning and scheduling, and that neither area has the right set of tools for solving these vexing problems. 1 The Ambitious Spacecraft Imagine a hypothetical spacecraft enroute to a distant planet. Between propulsion cycles, there are time windows when the craft can be turned for communication and scientific observations. At any given time, the spacecraft has a large set of possible scientific observations that it can perform, each having some value or priority. For each observation, the spacecraft will need to be turned towards the target and the required measurement or exposure taken. Unfortunately, turning to a target is a slow operation that may take up to 30 minutes, depending on the magnitude of the turn. As a result, the choice of experiments and the order in which they are performed has a significant impact on the duration of turns and, therefore, on how much can be accomplished. All this is further complicated by several things:
On the conversion between nonbinary and binary constraint satisfaction problems
, 1998
"... It is well known that any nonbinary discrete constraint satisfaction problem (CSP) can be translated into an equivalent binary CSP. Two translations are known: the dual graph translation and the hidden variable translation. However, there has been little theoretical or experimental work on how well ..."
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Cited by 88 (6 self)
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It is well known that any nonbinary discrete constraint satisfaction problem (CSP) can be translated into an equivalent binary CSP. Two translations are known: the dual graph translation and the hidden variable translation. However, there has been little theoretical or experimental work on how well backtracking algorithms perform on these binary representations in comparison to their performance on the corresponding nonbinary CSP. We present both theoretical and empirical results to help understand the tradeoffs involved. In particular, we show that translating a nonbinary CSP into a binary representation can be a viable solution technique in certain circumstances. The ultimate aim of this research is to give guidance for when one should consider translating between nonbinary and binary representations. Our results supply some initial answers to this question.