Differential Evolution

Differential evolution is a stochastic parallel direct search evolution strategy optimization method that is fairly fast and reasonably robust. Differential evolution is implemented in the Wolfram Language as NMinimize[f, vars, Method -> "DifferentialEvolution"] and NMaximize[f, vars, Method -> "DifferentialEvolution"].

Differential evolution is capable of handling nondifferentiable, nonlinear and multimodal objective functions. It has been used to train neural networks having real and constrained integer weights.

In a population of potential solutions within an n-dimensional search space, a fixed number of vectors are randomly initialized, then evolved over time to explore the search space and to locate the minima of the objective function.

At each iteration, called a generation, new vectors are generated by the combination of vectors randomly chosen from the current population (mutation). The outcoming vectors are then mixed with a predetermined target vector. This operation is called recombination and produces the trial vector. Finally, the trial vector is accepted for the next generation if and only if it yields a reduction in the value of the objective function. This last operator is referred to as a selection.

See also

Evolution Strategies, Genetic Algorithm, Maximization, Minimization, Optimization, Optimization Theory

Portions of this entry contributed by Vassilis Plagianakos

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Ilonen, J.; Kamarainen, J. K.; and Lampinen, J. "Differential Evolution Training Algorithm for Feed Forward Neural Networks." Neurol. Proc. Lett. 17, 93-105, 2003.Plagianakos, V. P. and Vrahatis, M. N. "Parallel Evolutionary Training Algorithms for Hardware-Friendly Neural Networks." Natural Comp. 1, 307-322, 2002.Price, K. and Storn, R. "Differential Evolution." Dr. Dobb's J., Issue 264, 18-24 and 78, Apr. 1997.Storn, R. "System Design by Constraint Adaptation and Differential Evolution." IEEE Trans. Evol. Comput. 3, 22-34, 1999.Storn, R. and Price, K. "Differential Evolution: A Simple and Efficient Adaptive Scheme for Global Optimization over Continuous Spaces." J. Global Optimization 11, 341-359, 1997.

Referenced on Wolfram|Alpha

Differential Evolution

Cite this as:

Plagianakos, Vassilis and Weisstein, Eric W. "Differential Evolution." From MathWorld--A Wolfram Web Resource.

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