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A multi-directional modified physarum solver for discrete decision making

Masi, Luca and Vasile, Massimiliano (2012) A multi-directional modified physarum solver for discrete decision making. In: Bioinspired Optimization Methods and their Applications, BIOMA 2012, 2012-05-24 - 2012-05-25.

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In this paper, a bio-inspired algorithm able to incrementally grow decision graphs in multiple directions is presented. The heuristic draws inspiration from the behaviour of the slime mould Physarum Polycephalum. In its main vegetative state, the plasmodium, this large single-celled amoeboid organism extends and optimizes a net of veins looking for food. The algorithm is here used to solve classical problems in operations research (symmetric Traveling Salesman and Vehicle Routing Problems). Simulations on selected test cases demonstrate that a multidirectional modied Physarum solver performs better than a unidirectional one. The ability to evaluate decisions from multiple directions enhances the performance of the solver in the construction and selection of optimal decision sequences.