Indicator-Based Evolutionary Level Set Approximation: Mixed Mutation Strategy and Extended Analysis
The aim of evolutionary level set approximation is to find a finite representation of a level set of a given black box function. The problem of level set approximation plays a vital role in solving problems, for instance in fault detection in water distribution systems, engineering design, parameter identification in gene regulatory networks, and in drug discovery. The goal is to create algorithms that quickly converge to feasible solutions and then achieve a good coverage of the level set. The population based search scheme of evolutionary algorithms makes this type of algorithms well suited to target such problems. In this paper, the focus is on continuous black box functions and we propose a challenging benchmark for this problem domain and propose dual mutation strategies, that balance between global exploration and local refinement. Moreover, the article investigates the role of different indicators for measuring the coverage of the level set approximation. The results are promising and show that even for difficult problems in moderate dimension the proposed evolutionary level set approximation algorithm (ELSA) can serve as a versatile and robust meta-heuristic.
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