Symbolic Planning with Edge-Valued Multi-Valued Decision Diagrams
Keywords:planning, state-dependent action cost, symbolic search
Symbolic representations have attracted significant attention in optimal planning. Binary Decision Diagrams (BDDs) form the basis for symbolic search algorithms. Closely related are Algebraic Decision Diagrams (ADDs), used to represent heuristic functions. Also, progress was made in dealing with models that take state-dependent action costs into account. Here, costs are represented as Edge-valued Multi-valued Decision Diagrams (EVMDDs), which can be exponentially more compact than the corresponding ADD representation. However, they were not yet considered for symbolic planning. In this work, we study EVMDD-based symbolic search for optimal planning. We define EVMDD-based representations of state sets and transition relations, and show how to compute the necessary operations required for EVMDD-A*. This EVMDD-based version of symbolic A* generalizes its BDD variant, and allows to solve planning tasks with state-dependent action costs. We prove theoretically that our approach is sound, complete and optimal. Additionally, we present an empirical analysis comparing EVMDD-A* to BDD-A* and explicit A* search. Our results underscore the usefulness of symbolic approaches and the feasibility of dealing with models that go beyond unit costs.