C. Hernandez, J. Baier, T. Uras and S. Koenig. Position Paper: Incremental Search Algorithms Considered Poorly Understood. In Symposium on Combinatorial Search (SoCS), 2012.

Abstract: Incremental search algorithms, such as D* Lite, reuse information from previous searches to speed up the current search and can thus solve sequences of similar search problems faster than Repeated A*, which performs repeated A* searches. In this position paper, we study goal-directed navigation in initially unknown terrain and point out that it is currently not well understood when D* Lite runs faster than Repeated A*. In general, it appears that Repeated A* runs faster than D* Lite for easy navigation problems (where the agent reaches the goal with only a small number of searches), which means that it runs faster than D* Lite quite often in practice. We draw two conclusions, namely that incremental search algorithms need to be evaluated in more diverse testbeds to improve our understanding of their properties and that they can be improved to be more competitive for easy navigation problems.

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