Adaptation in Natural and Artificial Systems

An Introductory Analysis with Applications to Biology, Control, and Artificial Intelligence

Genetic algorithms are playing an increasingly important role in studies of complex adaptive systems, ranging from adaptive agents in economic theory to the use of machine learning techniques in the design of complex devices such as aircraft turbines and integrated circuits. Adaptation in Natural and Artificial Systems is the book that initiated this field of study, presenting the theoretical foundations and exploring applications.

In its most familiar form, adaptation is a biological process, whereby organisms evolve by rearranging genetic material to survive in environments confronting them. In this now classic work, Holland presents a mathematical model that allows for the nonlinearity of such complex interactions. He demonstrates the model's universality by applying it to economics, physiological psychology, game theory, and artificial intelligence and then outlines the way in which this approach modifies the traditional views of mathematical genetics.

Initially applying his concepts to simply defined artificial systems with limited numbers of parameters, Holland goes on to explore their use in the study of a wide range of complex, naturally occuring processes, concentrating on systems having multiple factors that interact in nonlinear ways. Along the way he accounts for major effects of coadaptation and coevolution: the emergence of building blocks, or schemata, that are recombined and passed on to succeeding generations to provide, innovations and improvements.

Table of Contents

  1. Preface to the 1992 Edition
  2. Preface
  3. 1. The General Setting
  4. 2. A Formal Framework
  5. 3. Illustrations
  6. 4. Schemata
  7. 5. The Optimal Allocation of Trials
  8. 6. Reproductive Plans and Genetic Operators
  9. 7. The Robustness of Genetic Plans
  10. 8. Adaptation of Codings and Representations
  11. 9. An Overview
  12. 10. Interim and Prospectus
  13. Glossary of Important Symbols
  14. Bibliography
  15. Index