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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/24610

Title: Nature vs Nurture: Effects of Learning on Evolution
Authors: Nagrani, Nagina
Advisor: D'Eleuterio, Gabriele M. T.
Department: Aerospace Science and Engineering
Keywords: Artificial Intelligence
Robotics
Issue Date: 27-Jul-2010
Abstract: In the field of Evolutionary Robotics, the design, development and application of artificial neural networks as controllers have derived their inspiration from biology. Biologists and artificial intelligence researchers are trying to understand the effects of neural network learning during the lifetime of the individuals on evolution of these individuals by qualitative and quantitative analyses. The conclusion of these analyses can help develop optimized artificial neural networks to perform any given task. The purpose of this thesis is to study the effects of learning on evolution. This has been done by applying Temporal Difference Reinforcement Learning methods to the evolution of Artificial Neural Tissue controller. The controller has been assigned the task to collect resources in a designated area in a simulated environment. The performance of the individuals is measured by the amount of resources collected. A comparison has been made between the results obtained by incorporating learning in evolution and evolution alone. The effects of learning parameters: learning rate, training period, discount rate, and policy on evolution have also been studied. It was observed that learning delays the performance of the evolving individuals over the generations. However, the non zero learning rate throughout the evolution process signifies natural selection preferring individuals possessing plasticity.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/24610
Appears in Collections:Master
Institute for Aerospace Studies - Master theses

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