I need to divide 48 pieces of jewelry between 3 inheritors so as to give equal, or nearly equal value, to each. I have learned that this is called the 3-partition problem. I solved it for 9 pieces of jewely by exhaustive enumeration (some 19,000 possibilities) in a spreadsheet (LibreOffice Calc). No big deal. But all 48 pieces becomes a big deal.
I don't actually need a perfect solution. A heuristic algorithm would suffice if it were acknowledged as an acceptable solution scheme by some set of professionals; programmers, estate settling lawyers, etc. In other words using a technique recognized as "good enough" will be good enough for my purpose.
This question is also posted on StackOverflow. They suggested I post here.
Thank you, David