Evolutionary Computation and Genetic Algorithms

William H. Hsu (Kansas State University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-010-3.ch126
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Abstract

A genetic algorithm (GA) is a method used to find approximate solutions to difficult search, optimization, and machine learning problems (Goldberg, 1989) by applying principles of evolutionary biology to computer science. Genetic algorithms use biologically-derived techniques such as inheritance, mutation, natural selection, and recombination. They are a particular class of evolutionary algorithms. Genetic algorithms are typically implemented as a computer simulation in which a population of abstract representations (called chromosomes) of candidate solutions (called individuals) to an optimization problem evolves toward better solutions. Traditionally, solutions are represented in binary as strings of 0s and 1s, but different encodings are also possible. The evolution starts from a population of completely random individuals and happens in generations. In each generation, multiple individuals are stochastically selected from the current population, modified (mutated or recombined) to form a new population, which becomes current in the next iteration of the algorithm.
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Introduction

A genetic algorithm (GA) is a method used to find approximate solutions to difficult search, optimization, and machine learning problems (Goldberg, 1989) by applying principles of evolutionary biology to computer science. Genetic algorithms use biologically-derived techniques such as inheritance, mutation, natural selection, and recombination. They are a particular class of evolutionary algorithms.

Genetic algorithms are typically implemented as a computer simulation in which a population of abstract representations (called chromosomes) of candidate solutions (called individuals) to an optimization problem evolves toward better solutions. Traditionally, solutions are represented in binary as strings of 0s and 1s, but different encodings are also possible. The evolution starts from a population of completely random individuals and happens in generations. In each generation, multiple individuals are stochastically selected from the current population, modified (mutated or recombined) to form a new population, which becomes current in the next iteration of the algorithm.

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