Shortest Path and Distance Queries on Road Networks: An Experimental Evaluation

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Computing the shortest path between two given locations in a road network is an important problem that finds applications in various map services and commercial navigation products. The state-of-the-art solutions for the problem can be divided into two categories: spatial-coherence-based methods and vertex-importance-based approaches. The two categories of techniques, however, have not been compared systematically under the same experimental framework, as they were developed from two independent lines of research that do not refer to each other. This renders it difficult for a practitioner to decide which technique should be adopted for a specific application. Furthermore, the experimental evaluation of the existing techniques, as presented in previous work, falls short in several aspects.