— “The Feynman Algorithm” as described by Murray Gell-Mann
Consider the following problem: You are to visit all the cities, towns, and villages of, say, Sweden and then return to your starting point. This might take a while (there are 24,978 locations to visit, after all), so you want to minimize your route. You plan on visiting each location exactly once, following the shortest route possible. As a programmer, you certainly don’t want to plot the route by hand. Rather, you try to write some code that will plan your trip for you. For some reason, however, ...