Exploiting a Page Level Upper Bound for Multi-Type Nearest Neighbor Queries

Date of Submission: 
March 31, 2005
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Given a query point and a collection of spatial features, a multi-type nearest neighbor query finds the shortest tour for the query point in a way such that only one instance of each feature type is visited during the tour. For example, a tourist may be interested in finding the shortest tour which starts at a hotel and passes through a post office, a gas station, and a grocery store. The multi-type nearest query problem is different from the traditional nearest neighbor query problem, since there are many objects for each feature type and the shortest tour should pass through only one object from each feature type. In this paper, we propose R-tree based optimal solutions, which exploit a page-level upper bound for efficient computation. Also, since this problem is a generalized Traveling Salesman Problem (TSP) and is NP-hard, we provide several heuristic methods for the case that there are a large number of feature types in the data. Finally, experimental results are provided to show the strength of the proposed algorithms and design decisions related to performance tuning.