Harmony Search for Generalized Orienteering Problem: Best Touring in China

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In order to overcome the drawbacks of mathematical optimization techniques, soft computing algorithms have been vigorously introduced during the past decade. However, there are still some possibilities of devising new algorithms based on analogies with natural phenomena. A nature-inspired algorithm, mimicking the improvisation process of music players, has been recently developed and named Harmony Search (HS). The algorithm has been successfully applied to various engineering optimization problems. In this paper, the HS was applied to a TSP-like NP-hard Generalized Orienteering Problem (GOP) which is to find the utmost route under the total distance limit while satisfying multiple goals. Example area of the GOP is eastern part of China. The results of HS showed that the algorithm could find good solutions when compared to those of artificial neural network.