In 2001, it was solved by using a balanced bidirectional RRT, developed by James Kuffner and Steve LaValle. There are no special heuristics or parameters that were tuned specifically for this problem. On a current PC (circa 2003), it consistently takes a few minutes to solve. As of June 2003, we know of only two other algorithms that have been able to solve this example. One is by Kineo, a French company that develops motion planning software. This planner is also based on RRTs. The other is by Pekka Isto, who was a Ph.D. student from the Helsinki University of Technology in Finland.
MPEG Animation: [5.1MB]
The animation was made by James Kuffner.