Browse Definitions :
Definition

evolutionary algorithm

Contributor(s): Matthew Haughn

An evolutionary algorithm (EA) is an algorithm that uses mechanisms inspired by nature and solves problems through processes that emulate the behaviors of living organisms. EA is a component of both evolutionary computing and bio-inspired computing.

EAs are inspired by the concepts in Darwinian Evolution. In EAs, the solutions play the role of individual organisms in a population. The mix of potential solutions to a problem is populated randomly first. Then the population is tested for fitness -- how well and how quickly it solves a problem. Next, the fittest individuals are selected for reproduction. The cycle begins again as the fitness of the population is evaluated and the least fit individuals are eliminated.

As the mechanisms by which EAs work are inspired by evolution and living organisms, functions might include selection, reproduction, mutation  and  recombination. The adaptive process of choosing the best available solutions to a problem where selection occurs according to fitness is analogous to Darwin’s survival of the fittest. Algorithm solutions that work best among the available options reproduce; the least fit, being eliminated, do not. By testing fitness according to measured performance, optimization occurs over generations through such functions as  mutation .

EAs are excellent at optimizing solutions. It is important to note though that while EAs optimize effectively, they don’t necessarily find the optimal solution. Instead, EAs constantly find working solutions and measure performance against one another, which may or may not find the absolute best possible solution. EAs’ relatively high computational requirements, which may also be a consideration, are largely due to the complexity of fitness determination. This complexity can be reduced through fitness approximation.

This was last updated in April 2018

Continue Reading About evolutionary algorithm

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

Powered by:

SearchCompliance

  • regulatory compliance

    Regulatory compliance is an organization's adherence to laws, regulations, guidelines and specifications relevant to its business...

  • privacy compliance

    Privacy compliance is a company's accordance with established personal information protection guidelines, specifications or ...

  • data governance policy

    A data governance policy is a documented set of guidelines for ensuring that an organization's data and information assets are ...

SearchSecurity

  • asymmetric cryptography (public key cryptography)

    Asymmetric cryptography, also known as public-key cryptography, is a process that uses a pair of related keys -- one public key ...

  • Evil Corp

    Evil Corp is an international cybercrime network that uses malicious software to steal money from its victims' bank accounts.

  • Plundervolt

    Plundervolt is a method of hacking that involves depriving an Intel chip of power so that processing errors occur.

SearchHealthIT

  • telemedicine (telehealth)

    Telemedicine is the remote delivery of healthcare services, such as health assessments or consultations, over the ...

  • Project Nightingale

    Project Nightingale is a controversial partnership between Google and Ascension, the second largest health system in the United ...

  • medical practice management (MPM) software

    Medical practice management (MPM) software is a collection of computerized services used by healthcare professionals and ...

SearchDisasterRecovery

SearchStorage

  • M.2 SSD

    An M.2 SSD is a solid-state drive (SSD) that conforms to a computer industry specification written for internally mounted storage...

  • RAID (redundant array of independent disks)

    RAID (redundant array of independent disks) is a way of storing the same data in different places on multiple hard disks or ...

  • cache memory

    Cache memory, also called CPU memory, is high-speed static random access memory (SRAM) that a computer microprocessor can access ...

Close