Provably good solutions for the traveling salesman problem

Abstract

The determination of true optimum solutions of combinatorial optimization problems is seldomly required in practical applications. The majority of users of optimization software would be satisfied with solutions of guaranteed quality in the sense that it can be proven that the given solution is at most a few percent off an optimum solution. This paper presents a general framework for practical problem solving with emphasis on this aspect. A detailed discussion along with a report about extensive computational experiments is given for the traveling salesman problem

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