PPSN 2010 and Evolving Ants

For the next days I will be attending PPSN 2010, in Krakow, Poland. I was here for the venue two years ago and it was a conference that I enjoyed very much. Mostly because of the model which is different from the standard ones (poster only format, absence of parallel sessions and a summary presentation of the papers by a senior session chair).

I will be talking about my lastest work which ties together two techniques that I’ve always wanted to do some serious work with them: Ant Systems and Genetic Programming. In this first paper, I am using GP to evolve an Ant System component. A key issue in AS research is how to design the communication mechanism between ants that allows them to effectively solve a problem. We propose in this work to evolve the current pheromone trail update methods. We tested with the TSP and initial results show that the evolved strategies perform well and exhibit a good generalization capability when applied to larger instances.

Doing this work was also very fun and it was all made in Lisp. I just need to improve the code a bit and package it nicely before making it free available.

Anyway, I wish PPSN 2010 will be an interesting conference!

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