Assessing the Relevance of Processing Building Blocks in Evolutionary Computation: Experiments with Linear Systems of Equations
David B. Fogel* and Peter J. Angeline**
*Natural Selection, Inc. 3333 N. Torrey Pines Ct., Suite 200, La Jolla, CA 92037
**Natural Selection, Inc. 509 Colgate St. Vestal, NY 13850
Experiments are conducted to assess the utility of processing building blocks within a framework of evolutionary computation. Systems of linear equations are used for testing the efficiency of different recombination operators, including one- and two-point and uniform crossover. The consistent results indicate that uniform crossover, which disrupts building blocks maximally, generates statistically significantly better solutions than one- or two-point crossover. Moreover, for the cases of small population sizes, crossing over existing solutions with completely random solutions (i.e., macromutation) can perform as well or better than the traditional oneand two-point operators. The results do not support the building block hypothesis.