[Jairsubscribers] 7 new articles published by JAIR
jair-ed at ISI.EDU
Wed Jul 2 11:46:05 PDT 2008
Dear JAIR subscriber:
We are pleased to announce that the JAIR mailing list is back in operation.
This message lists papers that have been published in JAIR in the last month and describes how to access them. (If you wish to remove yourself from this mailing list, see instructions at the end of this message.)
I. New JAIR Articles
V. Bulitko, M. Lustrek, J. Schaeffer, Y. Bjornsson and S. Sigmundarson (2008)
"Dynamic Control in Real-Time Heuristic Search",
Volume 32, pages 419-452
For quick access go to <http://www.jair.org/papers/paper2497.html>
Real-time heuristic search is a challenging type of agent-centered search because the agent's planning time per action is bounded by a constant independent of problem size. A common problem that imposes such restrictions is pathfinding in modern computer games where a large number of units must plan their paths simultaneously over large maps. Common search algorithms (e.g., A*, IDA*, D*, ARA*, AD*) are inherently not real-time and may lose completeness when a constant bound is imposed on per-action planning time. Real-time search algorithms retain completeness but frequently produce unacceptably suboptimal solutions. In this paper, we extend classic and modern real-time search algorithms with an automated mechanism for dynamic depth and subgoal selection. The new algorithms remain real-time and complete. On large computer game maps, they find paths within 7% of optimal while on average expanding roughly a single state per action. This is nearly a three-fold improvement in suboptimality over the existing state-of-the-art algorithms and, at the same time, a 15-fold improvement in the amount of planning per action.
B. C. Csaji and L. Monostori (2008)
"Adaptive Stochastic Resource Control: A Machine Learning Approach",
Volume 32, pages 453-486
For quick access go to <http://www.jair.org/papers/paper2548.html>
The paper investigates stochastic resource allocation problems with scarce, reusable resources and non-preemtive, time-dependent, interconnected tasks. This approach is a natural generalization of several standard resource management problems, such as scheduling and transportation problems. First, reactive solutions are considered and defined as control policies of suitably reformulated Markov decision processes (MDPs). We argue that this reformulation has several favorable properties, such as it has finite state and action spaces, it is aperiodic, hence all policies are proper and the space of control policies can be safely restricted. Next, approximate dynamic programming (ADP) methods, such as fitted Q-learning, are suggested for computing an efficient control policy. In order to compactly maintain the cost-to-go function, two representations are studied: hash tables and support vector regression (SVR), particularly, nu-SVRs. Several additional improvements, such as the application of limited-lookahead rollout algorithms in the initial phases, action space decomposition, task clustering and distributed sampling are investigated, too. Finally, experimental results on both benchmark and industry-related data are presented.
F. Stulp and M. Beetz (2008)
"Refining the Execution of Abstract Actions with Learned Action Models",
Volume 32, pages 487-523
For quick access go to <http://www.jair.org/papers/paper2479.html>
Robots reason about abstract actions, such as "go to position `l'", in order to decide what to do or to generate plans for their intended course of action. The use of abstract actions enables robots to employ small action libraries, which reduces the search space for decision making. When executing the actions, however, the robot must tailor the abstract actions to the specific task and situation context at hand.
In this article we propose a novel robot action execution system that learns success and performance models for possible specializations of abstract actions. At execution time, the robot uses these models to optimize the execution of abstract actions to the respective task contexts. The robot can so use abstract actions for efficient reasoning, without compromising the performance of action execution. We show the impact of our action execution model in three robotic domains and on two kinds of action execution problems: (1) the instantiation of free action parameters to optimize the expected performance of action sequences; (2) the automatic introduction of additional subgoals to make action sequences more reliable.
S. Bouveret and J. Lang (2008)
"Efficiency and Envy-freeness in Fair Division of Indivisible Goods: Logical Representation and Complexity",
Volume 32, pages 525-564
For quick access go to <http://www.jair.org/papers/paper2467.html>
We consider the problem of allocating fairly a set of indivisible goods among agents from the point of view of compact representation and computational complexity. We start by assuming that agents have dichotomous preferences expressed by propositional formulae. We express efficiency and envy-freeness in a logical setting, which reveals unexpected connections to nonmonotonic reasoning. Then we identify the complexity of determining whether there exists an efficient and envy-free allocation, for several notions of efficiency, when preferences are represented in a succinct way (as well as restrictions of this problem). We first study the problem under the assumption that preferences are dichotomous, and then in the general case.
L. Xu, F. Hutter, H. H. Hoos and K. Leyton-Brown (2008)
"SATzilla: Portfolio-based Algorithm Selection for SAT",
Volume 32, pages 565-606
For quick access go to <http://www.jair.org/papers/paper2490.html>
It has been widely observed that there is no single "dominant" SAT solver; instead, different solvers perform best on different instances. Rather than following the traditional approach of choosing the best solver for a given class of instances, we advocate making this decision online on a per-instance basis. Building on previous work, we describe SATzilla, an automated approach for constructing per-instance algorithm portfolios for SAT that use so-called empirical hardness models to choose among their constituent solvers. This approach takes as input a distribution of problem instances and a set of component solvers, and constructs a portfolio optimizing a given objective function (such as mean runtime, percent of instances solved, or score in a competition). The excellent performance of SATzilla was independently verified in the 2007 SAT Competition, where our SATzilla07 solvers won three gold, one silver and one bronze medal. In this article, we go well beyond SATzilla07 by making the portfolio construction scalable and completely automated, and improving it by integrating local search solvers as candidate solvers, by predicting performance score instead of runtime, and by using hierarchical hardness models that take into account different types of SAT instances. We demonstrate the effectiveness of these new techniques in extensive experimental results on data sets including instances from the most recent SAT competition.
L. Bordeaux, M. Cadoli and T. Mancini (2008)
"A Unifying Framework for Structural Properties of CSPs: Definitions, Complexity, Tractability",
Volume 32, pages 607-629
For quick access go to <http://www.jair.org/papers/paper2538.html>
Literature on Constraint Satisfaction exhibits the definition of several ``structural'' properties that can be possessed by CSPs, like (in)consistency, substitutability or interchangeability.
Current tools for constraint solving typically detect such properties efficiently by means of incomplete yet effective algorithms, and use them to reduce the search space and boost search.
In this paper, we provide a unifying framework encompassing most of the properties known so far, both in CSP and other fields' literature, and shed light on the semantical relationships among them.
This gives a unified and comprehensive view of the topic, allows new, unknown, properties to emerge, and clarifies the computational complexity of the various detection problems.
In particular, among the others, two new concepts, fixability and removability emerge, that come out to be the ideal characterisations of values that may be safely assigned or removed from a variable's domain, while preserving problem satisfiability.
These two notions subsume a large number of known properties, including
inconsistency, substitutability and others.
Because of the computational intractability of all the property-detection problems, by following the CSP approach we then determine a number of relaxations which provide sufficient conditions for their tractability. In particular, we exploit forms of language restrictions and local reasoning.
F. Yang , J. Culberson , R. Holte, U. Zahavi and A. Felner (2008)
"A General Theory of Additive State Space Abstractions",
Volume 32, pages 631-662
For quick access go to <http://www.jair.org/papers/paper2486.html>
Informally, a set of abstractions of a state space S is additive if the distance between any two states in S is always greater than or equal to the sum of the corresponding distances in the abstract spaces. The first known additive abstractions, called disjoint pattern databases, were experimentally demonstrated to produce state of the art performance on certain state spaces. However, previous applications were restricted to state spaces with special properties, which precludes disjoint pattern databases from being defined for several commonly used testbeds, such as Rubik's Cube, TopSpin and the Pancake puzzle. In this paper we give a general definition of additive abstractions that can be applied to any state space and prove that heuristics based on additive abstractions are consistent as well as admissible. We use this new definition to create additive abstractions for these testbeds and show experimentally that well chosen additive abstractions can reduce search time substantially for the (18,4)-TopSpin puzzle and by three orders of magnitude over state of the art methods for the 17-Pancake puzzle. We also derive a way of testing if the heuristic value returned by additive abstractions is provably too low and show that the use of this test can reduce search time for the 15-puzzle and TopSpin by roughly a factor of two.
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