Toward a general purpose software environment for timeline-based planning

Cesta, A., Orlandini, A. and Umbrico, A.

In Proceedings of the 20th RCRA International Workshop on "Experimental Evaluation of Algorithms for solving problems with combinatorial explosion" (RCRA 2013). Rome (Italy), June 14-15, 2013

Timeline-based Planning and Scheduling applications have been successfully deployed in various contexts. Often such applications use specific solving algorithms and cannot be easily applied for solving different kind of problems. Then, an open research issue for such planning modeling is the one of creating a software infrastructure with a controllable search engine. In this regard, this paper presents an attempt to synthesize such a software environment. The Extensible Planning and Scheduling Library (EPSL) evolves from the Timeline Representation Framework (APSI-TRF), a software environment supported by the European Space Agency. Goal of EPSL is to obtain a software architecture having the flexibility to focus on specific problem solving aspects. The paper is an initial report on this effort: it introduces the whole idea, then focuses on the definition of suitable heuristic functions, and presents experiments related to two domains generated by current applications.