Tired of solving Sudokus by hand? This class teaches you how to solve complex search problems with discrete optimization concepts and algorithms, including constraint programming, local search, and mixed-integer programming.Optimization technology is ubiquitous in our society. It schedules planes and their crews, coordinates the production of steel, and organizes the transportation of iron ore from the mines to the ports. Optimization clears the day-ahead and real-time markets to deliver electricity to millions of people. It organizes kidney exchanges and cancer treatments and helps scientists understand the fundamental fabric of life, control complex chemical reactions, and design drugs that may benefit billions of individuals.
The course has an open format. At the start of the course all of the assignments and lectures are available and each student is free to design their own plan of study and proceed at their own pace. The assessments in the course consist of five programming tasks where students experience the challenges of real world optimization problems such as selecting the most profitable locations of retail stores (facility location) and the design of package delivery routes (vehicle routing). The class community is an important aspect of this course and students are encouraged to collaborate and help each other in the completion of the assignments.
The lectures are designed to be self-contained and there are no required readings for this course.
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