Optimizing Your Search Algorithms: Notes on Quiescent Search and Branching Factor

Branching Factor

  • The branching factor is the number of children at each node.
  • The effective branching factor is the number of children generated by a "typical" node for a given search problem.

Quiescent Search

A full-width search sees everything up to its horizon, and nothing beyond. This is called the horizon effect. It's like not seeing the big picture and getting stuck in the details.

But fear not, the quiescent search is here to save the day! It starts at the leaf nodes and tries to solve the horizon effect. Essentially, any move that might make things worse is not quiescent.

Depth-limited search algorithms need a quiescent search to avoid errors. You don't want to be making decisions based on incomplete information.

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