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authors Corne, D., Smithers, T. and Ross, P.
year 1994
title Solving design problems by computational exploration
source J. S. Gero and E. Tyugu (eds), Formal Design Methods for CAD, NorthHolland, Amsterdam, pp. 249-270
summary Most real-world problems, especially design problems, are ill-structured, but formal approaches to problem-solving in AI have only really made progress into techniques for solving well-structured problems. Nevertheless, such research contains clues which illuminate the way towards formal approaches to solving ill-structured problems. This paper presents the foundations of an approach towards developing a better computational understanding of ill-structured problems and how to solve them computationally, with the eventual aim of giving AI problems a much greater and more useful role in the design process. The main issues which come up in this endeavour are the notions of different kinds of ill-structuredness, and the meaning of a 'solution' to an ill-structured (and hence possibly insoluble) problem. Some basic algorithmic recipes are proposed for dealing with the main kinds of ill-structuredness, and the initial design of a general computational technique which deals with general ill-structuredness is discussed.
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