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5. Optimization > Other Possibilities

Other Possibilities

This chapter has shown three completely different applications for optimization algorithms, but that’s only a small fraction of what is possible. As stated throughout the chapter, the important steps are deciding on a representation and a cost function. If you can do these things, there’s a good chance you can use optimization to find solutions to your problem.

An interesting activity might be to take a large group of people and divide them into teams in which the skills of the members are evenly divided. In a trivia contest, it might be desirable to create teams from a set of people so that each team has adequate knowledge of sports, history, literature, and television. Another possibility is to assign tasks in group projects by taking a combination of people’s skills into account. Optimization can determine the best way to divide the tasks so that the task list is completed in the shortest possible time.


  

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