Tuesday, December 20, 2005


EC history blogging

Genetic argonaut has a post on the history of evolution strategies here. It is quite a nice post, although my comment tries to set the record straight on both historical and editorial counts:
Nice post on the history of EC. The first "official" meeting of German and US EC interests was actually PPSN in Dortmund in 1990, not ICGA 91, and PPSN was predated by my trip to a German OR conferernce Ulm in 1989, I believe, at H-P Schwefel's invitation. Yuval Davidor and I were at that conference representing Michigan-style GAs. Also, I'm not sure what the (unbalanced) editorializing about building blocks is doing in an otherwise very nice historical post. At the time, we knew there were differences of opinion about what was important, but we were all glad to have newfound comrads in EC arms. An accurate historical portrayal should emphasize the coming together that started in the late 80s and 90s.
Nonetheless, the post is a good one. We can hope that the argonaut does an equally nice job about the early days of Fogel and Holland.

Hi, Dr Goldberg!!

I am so glad that you liked the post about Evolutionary Computation Classics - Volume I.

Yes, I am preparing here a material to write about the "North American" EC School (I do not like this denomination), that is, Lawrence Fogel and John Holland. I do not know if there are informations available in the Web, but it will be a nice search. :D

Thank You for you correction, I'll correct the informations soon.

I said that about the Schema Theorem and the BBH, because when I was beginning with Evolutionary Computation, I found some papers (e.g., Hans-Georg Beyer's paper: How GAs do NOT Work: Understanding GAs without Schemata and Building Blocks (1995)) that almost (completely??) crucified those two ideas (but we should be fair and say that Beyer offers us explanation for what he is saying). So, I thought that, maybe, in the past there were some discordances about the mean ideas that would guide the Genetic Algorithm working. I am not trying to put flames in our conversation, but is very good to know the diversity of opinions that there is inside an academic field. :)

"An accurate historical portrayal should emphasize the coming together that started in the late 80s and 90s".

Yes, I agree with you. But, in the late 80s and (principaly) 90s we saw an EC paper-boom, the most part, I guess, was about EC applications and some (where we find the weirdest ones) were about theoretical analysis. So, would be a little difficult to cover all the mean aspects of that time. I tried to cover the "most important" aspects in EC Classics - Volume I. But your suggestions area always nice to hear. Soon, I'll put some informations about Evolution Strategies in the late 1980s and 1990s, and I'll do the same for the Evolutionary Computation Classics - Volume II, that will be about Genetic Algorithms. :D

Auf Wiedersehen!!

Marcelo (a.k.a Nosophorus)
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