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GECCO posters: modern evolutionary algorithms and particle swarm optimization methodologies

Besides the two papers we presented in GECCO workshops, our research group also had a couple of posters in the main track. Posters get a two-page publication that you can find if you want, but probably the posters themselves will be much more informative.
The first one, with Mario García, presented a new (almost) serverless architecture for evolutionary algorithms:

The second paper, with Juanlu García, Carlos Fernandes, present a structured population approach to avoid premature convergence problems with Particle Swarm Optimization algorithms

This last work shows that using a regular population structure is better for low degree of connectivity, but this degree is quite important and has a big influence on the results.
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Self-organized criticality in code repositories

The GeNeura team is spread all over the world, and Dr. Juanlu Jiménez is in Le Havre as associate professor. He’s been so kind to invite us to a visit, and here’s the presentation we have made there.

Equipe Réseaux d’interactions et Intelligence Collective

During the last two weeks, we have been enjoying the visit of JJ Merelo at Ri2C team. On May 19th, he was delivering a seminar entitled Self-organized criticality in code repositories, of which you can find the abstract and the presentation next.

Abstract

It’s been known for some time that work in code repositories tend to self-organize and possibly in a self-organized state. What was not known is the conditions for this to happen, and what kind of description of the repository is needed to find these properties. In this talk we describe how a self-organized critical state has been found in a wide variety of repositories, including code or not.

The slides of the presentation are available at: https://jj.github.io/soc-code-repos/#/

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A better TORCS driving controller presented in EvoStar 2018

Amazing bench
Last year, we presented along with Mohammed Salem, from the university of Mascara, in Algeria, our TORCS driving controller. This controller effectively drives a simulated vehicle, considering input from its sensors, and deciding on a target speed and how to turn the steering wheel.
Poster session, with our poster in the first position
This year, in Evostar 2018 in Parma, we had again our paper accepted for the poster session, which took place in the incredible corridor to the right of these words. The poster included interactive elements, such as a small car used for demonstration on how the driver worked.

And it works really well, or at least better than the previous versions. The key element was the design of a new fitness function that includes damages, and also terms related to speed. Still some way to go; in the near future we will be posting our new results in this area.

The book of proceedings can be downloaded from Springer. Our paper is in page 342 and you can also download just the paper from here, but we do open science, so you can follow our writing process and download the paper from this GitHub repository too

 

 

Detección y predicción de flujos de personas y vehículos

En el marco del congreso CIMAS 21, que se celebrará en Granada, haré una presentación sobre las posibilidades de nuestro sistema de detección de tramas WiFi y Bluetooth, del que ya hemos hablado varias veces.

La presentación se centrará en los aspectos más analíticos de la plataforma, viendo las posibilidades que puede tener para un destino turístico con énfasis deportivo.

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Early prediction of the outcome of Starcraft Games

As a result of Antonio Álvarez Caballero master’s thesis, we’ll be presenting tomorrow at the IJCCI 2017 conference a poster on the early prediction of Starcraft games.
The basic idea behind this line of research is to try and find a model of the game so that we can do fast fitness evaluation of strategies without playing the whole game, which can take up to 60 minutes. That way, we can optimize those strategies in an evolutionary algorithm and find the best ones.
In our usual open science style, paper and data are available in a repository.
Our conclusions say that we might be able to pull that off, using k-nearest neighbor algorithm. But we might have to investigate a bit further if we really want to find a model that gives us some insight about what makes a strategy a winner.

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Dark clouds allow early prediction of heavy rain in Funchal, near where IJCCI is taking place

Self-organized criticality in software repositories, poster presented at ECAL 2017

mural-insa

The European Conference on Artificial Life or ECAL is not one of our usual suspects. Although we have attended from time to time, and even organized it back in 95 (yep, that is a real web page from 1995, minus the slate gray background), it is a conference I quite enjoy, together with other artificial life related conferences. Artificial life was quite the buzzword in the 90s, but nowadays with all the deep learning and AI stuff it has gone out of fashion. Last time I attended,ten years ago, it seemed more crowded. Be that as it may, I have presented a tutorial and a poster about our work on looking for critical state in software repositories. This the poster itself, and there is a link to the open access proceedings, although, as you know, all our papers are online and you can obtain that one (and a slew of other ones) from repository.
This is a line of research we have been working on for a year now, from this initial paper were we examined a single repository for the Moose Perl module. We are looking for patterns that allow us to say whether repositories are in a critical state or not. Being as they are completely artificial systems, engineering artefacts, looking for self organized criticality might seem like a lost cause. On the other hand, it really clicks with our own experience when writing a paper or anything, really. You write in long stretches, and then you do small sessions where you change a line or two.
This paper, which looks at all kinds of open source projects, from Docker to vue.js, looks at three different things: long distance correlations, free-scale behavior of changes, and a pink noise in the spectral density of the time series of changes. And we do find it, almost everywhere. Most big repos, with more than a few hundred commits, possess it, independently of their language or origin (hobbyist or company).
There is still a lot of work ahead. What are the main mechanisms for this self-organization? Are there any exceptions? That will have to wait until the next conference.

Asynchronous, heterogeneous, pool based evolutionary algorithms in GECCO 2017

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Fresh back from GECCO 2017, which is probably the main event for evolutionary algorithms and other metaheuristics. Together with the conference proper, there are workshops and tutorials. Last year we achieved full score, with papers, posters and tutorials. Unfortunately, not this year.
We’re happy though with the two papers that were accepted in the EvoSoft workshop, which we usually attend, and the BBOB benchmarking workshop. Both used the same thing, EvospaceJS, Mario’s framework for working with tuple-space pool-based evolutionary algorithms. The idea of this pool is decoupling algorithms from population. And as soon as you do that, a world of posibility opens, like using different clients on the same pool. In the EvoSoft paper, evospace-js: asynchronous pool-based execution of heterogeneous metaheuristics, we presented the general framework and a pool of concept which combined PSO and evolutionary algorithms, with very interesting results. Here’s the rather laconic presentation, which is a reason more to check out the paper.
In the second paperBenchmarking a pool-based execution with GA and PSO workers on the BBOB noiseless testbed.
All in all, EvospaceJS and NodIO, the two frameworks we work with, offer a nice platform for experimentation with different kind of algorithms that can be easily transported to the cloud and adapted to volunteer computing environments. Whatever the case, it also has an interesting dynamics that has an influence on the working of the evolutionary algorithms. Sure, we will continue tapping this source of interesting insights on evolutionary models.