PSU CS410/510SPS: Scheduling, Planning, and Search

Date: Spring, 1999
Time: Tuesday, Thursday 1400-1550
Instructor: Bart Massey <>
Location: TBA

This is a tentative syllabus. Some changes may occur before and/or after the course begins.


This course explores methods for the solution of constraint satisfaction and related problems using search techniques, in the context of real-world problems such as resource-bounded scheduling, enterprise planning, classical planning, and one- and two-player games. The emphasis is on coding projects, and on reading and reporting on selected literature.

The course is, of necessity, an overview of the area: there is far more material here than can be thoroughly covered in the time available. A student project and presentation will provide an opportunity for focus on a particular topic of individual interest.

The course announcement may be helpful in understanding the intent of the course.


Upon the successful completion of this course, a student will:

Course Materials

Papers, plus a textbook:

Michael Garey and David Johnson
Computers and Intractability: A Guide to the Theory of NP-Completeness
W H Freeman & Co.
ISBN: 0716710455

I won't lecture out of this more than once or twice, but it is indispensable as a reference, both during the course and afterward. The title is a bit intimidating, but take heart: this book is a practical nuts-and-bolts guide to separating tractable problems from intractable ones, including a large number of real-world examples.


Each student will be expected to do all assigned reading, to present a paper in class, and to do one or more coding homework assignments plus a small final coding project.

This is a seminar-style course: I will attempt to substitute discussion for lecture to the extent that I find it feasible. It is important that students come to class prepared to discuss the material.



#Date Topic
13/30 Introduction To Search
24/01 Review of NP-Completeness
34/06 Search Problems and Tools
44/08 Constraint Satisfaction I: Foundations
54/13 Constraint Satisfaction II: Search
64/15 ``Easy'' NP-Hard Problems
74/20 Scheduling
84/22 Resource-Constrained Scheduling
94/27 Classical Planning I: Foundations
104/29 Classical Planning II: Search
115/04 One-Player Games (With Applications)
125/06 Two-Player Games (With Applications)
135/11 Enterprise Planning
145/13 TBA
155/18 Student Presentations
165/20 Student Presentations
175/25 Student Presentations
185/27 Student Presentations
196/01 Student Presentations
206/03 Student Presentations

Last Modified: 1999/2/20
Bart Massey, <>