Generalized local propagation: A framework for solving constraint hierarchies

  • Hiroshi Hosobe
  • Satoshi Matsuoka
  • Akinori Yonezawa
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 1118)


‘Constraint hierarchy’ is a nonmonotonic system that allows programmers to describe over-constrained real-world problems by specifying constraints with hierarchical preferences, and has been applied to various areas. An important aspect of constraint hierarchies is the existence of efficient satisfaction algorithms based on local propagation. However, past local-propagation algorithms have been limited to multi-way equality constraints. We overcome this by reformulating constraint hierarchies with a more strict definition, and proposing generalized local propagation as a theoretical framework for studying constraint hierarchies and local propagation. Then, we show that global semi- monotonicity in satisfying hierarchies turns out to be a practically useful property in generalized local propagation. Finally, we discuss the relevance of generalized local propagation with our previous DETAIL algorithm for solving hierarchies of multi-way equality constraints.


constraint hierarchies nonmonotonicity local propagation multi-way constraints 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hiroshi Hosobe
    • 1
  • Satoshi Matsuoka
    • 2
  • Akinori Yonezawa
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Information ScienceUniversity of TokyoTokyoJapan
  2. 2.Department of Mathematical EngineeringUniversity of TokyoTokyoJapan

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