Tabu Search

A practical method for solving challenging optimization problems

Tabu Search, also called Adaptive Memory Programming, is a method for solving challenging optimization problems in the fields of business, engineering, economics and science. Everyday examples include practical applications in resource management, financial and investment planning, healthcare systems, energy and environmental policy, pattern classification, biotechnology and a host of other areas. Tabu Search has emerged as one of the leading technologies for handling real-world problems that have proved difficult or impossible to solve with classical procedures.

Practical applications in optimization addressed by Tabu Search are exceedingly challenging and pervade the fields of business, engineering, economics and science. Everyday examples include problems in resource management, financial and investment planning, healthcare systems, energy and environmental policy, pattern classification, biotechnology and a host of other areas. The complexity and importance of such problems has motivated a wealth of academic and practical research throughout the past several decades, in an effort to discover methods that are able to find solutions of higher quality than many found in the past and capable of producing such solutions within feasible time limits or at reduced computational cost.

Tabu  Search  has  emerged  as  one  of  the  leading  technologies  for  handling  optimization problems that have proved difficult or impossible  to  solve  with  classical  procedures  that dominated   the   attention   of   textbooks   and   were   considered   the   mainstays   of   available  alternatives  until  recent  times.  A  key  feature  of  Tabu  Search,  underscored  by  its adaptive memory  programming alias,  is  the  use  of  special  strategies  designed  to  exploit  adaptive memory. The idea is that an effective search for optimal solutions should involve a process of flexibly responding to the solution landscape in a manner that permits it to learn appropriate directions  to  take  along  with  appropriate  departures  to  explore  new  terrain.  The  adaptive memory feature of Tabu Search and allows the implementation of procedures that are capable of searching this terrain economically and effectively.

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