Date: Nov 30, 2004 2:25 PM
Author: Keith A. Lewis
Subject: Re: finite maze solving algorithm


Kevin Saff <news@kevin.saff.net> writes in article <I808DL.GF2@news.boeing.com> dated Tue, 30 Nov 2004 18:22:32 GMT:
>Michael Michalchik wrote:
>> I was wondering if anyone knows if all possible topologies of finite
>> 2d mazes can be solved by a finite algorithm. For example, we know
>> that all fully connected mazes can be solved by picking a wall and
>> exhaustively following it. Can a general solution work for all mazes
>> including the ones that are piecewise disconnected? If this is
>> possible, is the general solution a solved problem?
>
>Interesting. How are you defining a maze, here? Usually, I think of a
>maze as just a graph, which you can solve using something simple like
>depth-first search, regardless of whether it is planar. It is probably
>better to think in terms of connectedness of rooms than connectedness of
>walls.

The basic problem with a depth-first search is the chance you'll get into a
loop going around and around a disconnected piece. The problem can be
avoided by making a rule to never cross your own path.

Or is there something more that I'm missing?

--Keith Lewis klewis {at} mitre.org
The above may not (yet) represent the opinions of my employer.