Dynamic Programming Dynamic programming is a useful mathematical technique for making a sequence of in- Summary: 533 11 Dynamic Programming Dynamic programming is a useful mathematical technique for making a sequence of in- terrelated decisions. It provides a systematic procedure for determining the optimal com- bination of decisions. In contrast to linear programming, there does not exist a standard mathematical for- mulation of "the" dynamic programming problem. Rather, dynamic programming is a gen- eral type of approach to problem solving, and the particular equations used must be de- veloped to fit each situation. Therefore, a certain degree of ingenuity and insight into the general structure of dynamic programming problems is required to recognize when and how a problem can be solved by dynamic programming procedures. These abilities can best be developed by an exposure to a wide variety of dynamic programming applications and a study of the characteristics that are common to all these situations. A large number of illustrative examples are presented for this purpose. 11.1 A PROTOTYPE EXAMPLE FOR DYNAMIC PROGRAMMING EXAMPLE 1 The Stagecoach Problem The STAGECOACH PROBLEM is a problem specially constructed1 to illustrate the fea- tures and to introduce the terminology of dynamic programming. It concerns a mythical Collections: Mathematics