Traveling Salesperson Problem: TSP is a problem that tries to find a tour of minimum cost that visits every city once. In this visualization, it is assumed that the underlying graph is a complete graph with (near-)metric distance (meaning the distance function satisfies the triangle inequality) by taking the distance of two points and round it to the nearest integer.
Remarks: By default, we show e-Lecture Mode for first time (or non logged-in) visitor.
If you are an NUS student and a repeat visitor, please login.
View the visualisation of TSP algorithm here.
Originally, all edges in the input graph are colored with the grey.
Throughout the visualization, traversed edge will be highlighted with orange.
Pro-tip 1: Since you are not logged-in, you may be a first time visitor (or not an NUS student) who are not aware of the following keyboard shortcuts to navigate this e-Lecture mode: [PageDown]/[PageUp] to go to the next/previous slide, respectively, (and if the drop-down box is highlighted, you can also use [→ or ↓/← or ↑] to do the same),and [Esc] to toggle between this e-Lecture mode and exploration mode.
There are two different sources for specifying an input graph:
- Draw Graph: You can put several points on the drawing box, but you must not draw any edge to ensure the (near-)metric property of the graph. After you have finished putting the points, the edges will be drawn automatically for you after.
- Example Graphs: You can select from the list of graphs to get you started.
Pro-tip 2: We designed this visualization and this e-Lecture mode to look good on 1366x768 resolution or larger (typical modern laptop resolution in 2021). We recommend using Google Chrome to access VisuAlgo. Go to full screen mode (F11) to enjoy this setup. However, you can use zoom-in (Ctrl +) or zoom-out (Ctrl -) to calibrate this.
Bruteforce: It tries all (V-1)! permutation of vertices (not all V! since it does not matter where we start from). It enumerates all possibilities by doing a dfs search with parameters similar to those of Held-Karp algorithm, that is, the DFS search will return the value of the tour starting from current vertex to all vertices that we have not already visited.
Time complexity: O(V * (V - 1)!) = O(V!).
Pro-tip 3: Other than using the typical media UI at the bottom of the page, you can also control the animation playback using keyboard shortcuts (in Exploration Mode): Spacebar to play/pause/replay the animation, ←/→ to step the animation backwards/forwards, respectively, and -/+ to decrease/increase the animation speed, respectively.
Dynamic Programming: It uses a widely known algorithm called Held-Karp. In this visualization, it is implemented as a DFS search that is the same with the bruteforce algorithm, but with memoization to cache the answers. This dramatically brings down the run time complexity to O(2^V * V^2).
Time complexity: O(2^V * V^2).
Note that for N = 10, this algorithm takes roughly ~(100 * 2^10) = 102K operations while the bruteforce algorithm takes roughly ~(10!) = 3628800 operations, around 30 times faster.
Approximation: There are two approximation algorithms available, a 2-approximation algorithm and a 1.5-approximation algorithm that is also well known as Christofides Algorithm.
You have reached the last slide. Return to 'Exploration Mode' to start exploring!
Note that if you notice any bug in this visualization or if you want to request for a new visualization feature, do not hesitate to drop an email to the project leader: Dr Steven Halim via his email address: stevenhalim at gmail dot com.