Delaying Variable Binding Commitments in Planning

Qiang Yang and Alex Y. M. Chan

One of the problems with many partial-order planners is their eager commitment to variable bindings. This is contrary to their control decision in delayed-commitment of operator orderings. In this paper we present an extension to the classical partial-order planners by associating every variable with a finite domain of values. The extended planner applies constraint satisfaction routines to check for the consistency of variable bindings. With the extended planner, we perform a set of experiments to show that it is able to reduce the amount of backtracking in domains where few variable instantiations can lead to final solutions. We also investigate the frequency of CSP application to determine how often should constraint checking be performed in order to yield the best performance.

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