AAAI Publications, Twenty-First International Conference on Automated Planning and Scheduling

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Partial-Order Support-Link Scheduling
Debdeep Banerjee, Patrik Haslum

Last modified: 2011-03-22


Partial-order schedules are valued because they are flexible, and therefore more robust to unexpected delays. Previous work has indicated that constructing partial-order schedules by a two-stage method, in which a fixed-time schedule is first found and a partial order then lifted from it, is far more efficient than constructing them directly by a least-commitment partial-order scheduling algorithm. However, the two-stage method is limited to exploring only a fraction of the space of partial-order schedules, namely those that can be obtained from the given fixed-time schedule. We introduce a novel constraint formulation of partial-order scheduling, which establishes explicit resource-providing "links" between activities instead of detecting and eliminating potential resource conflicts. We show that this yields an algorithm that is much faster than previous (precedence constraint posting) partial-order scheduling methods, and comparable to the two-stage method in terms of the quality and robustness of the schedules it finds. This algorithm is also complete, and because it searches the entire space of partial-order schedules, can be adapted to optimising different robustness criteria.

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