Ant colony optimisation (ACO) is an evolutionary search procedure based on the way that ant colonies co-operate in locating shortest routes to food sources. Early implementations focussed on the travelling salesman and other routing problems but it is now being applied to an increasingly diverse range of combinatorial optimisation problems. This talk will give an overview of ACO and demonstrate its effectiveness on both non-routing problems, specifically timetabling and scheduling problems, and dynamic problems (the dynamic vehicle routing problem). A number of enhancements and modifications to the original algorithm are introduced and shown to produce competitive results.
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