Optimization by Simulated Annealing

@article{Kirkpatrick1983OptimizationBS,
  title={Optimization by Simulated Annealing},
  author={Scott Kirkpatrick and Charles D. Gelatt and Michelle Vecchi},
  journal={Science},
  year={1983},
  volume={220},
  pages={671 - 680}
}
There is a deep and useful connection between statistical mechanics (the behavior of systems with many degrees of freedom in thermal equilibrium at a finite temperature) and multivariate or combinatorial optimization (finding the minimum of a given function depending on many parameters). A detailed analogy with annealing in solids provides a framework for optimization of the properties of very large and complex systems. This connection to statistical mechanics exposes new information and… 
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