A Building-Block Royal Road Where Crossover is Provably Essential

Watson, Richard A. and Jansen, Thomas, Thierens, Dirk and Lipson, Hod (eds.) (2007) A Building-Block Royal Road Where Crossover is Provably Essential. Proceedings of the Genetic and Evolutionary Computation Conference (GECCO 2007), 1452-1459.


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One of the most controversial yet enduring hypotheses about what genetic algorithms (GAs) are good for concerns the idea that GAs process building-blocks. More specifically, it has been suggested that crossover in GAs can assemble short low-order schemata of above average fitness (building blocks) to create higher-order higher-fitness schemata. However, there has been considerable difficulty in demonstrating this rigorously and intuitively. Here we provide a simple building-block function that a GA with two-point crossover can solve on average in polynomial time, whereas an asexual population or mutation hill-climber cannot.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Faculty of Physical Sciences and Engineering > Electronics and Computer Science > Agents, Interactions & Complexity
ePrint ID: 264283
Date Deposited: 07 Jul 2007
Last Modified: 27 Mar 2014 20:08
Publisher: ACM Press
Further Information:Google Scholar
ISI Citation Count:4
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/264283

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