Artificial Life 12

Conference talk for Alife X11

Redefining biological complexity at Artificial Life XII in Odense, Denmark

I attended Artificial Life 12 in the beautiful town of Odense, Denmark from the 19-23 August 2010. There were a lot of interesting presentations, but unfortunately the parallel sessions made it difficult to see all the papers that I would have liked. I presented a new paper, Enhancing Creativity with Niche Construction, which discusses the techniques used in the Niche Constructions artwork.

Well done to MIT Press, who have made the entire Alife XII Proceedings available on-line under a creative commons licence. Below I have listed a selection of papers I enjoyed (thanks also to Alan Dorin for providing some on this list):

  • Hiroki Sayama, Swarm Chemistry Evolving (see also the YouTube videos – but turn the sound down!);
  • Joshua E. Auerbach and Josh C. Bongard, Dynamic Resolution in the Co-Evolution of Morphology and Control;
  • Greg Turk, Sticky Feet: Evolution in a Multi-Creature Physical Simulation (missed this but highly recommended by Alan);
  • Seth Bullock and Michael Kerby, Multi-Modal Swarm Construction – interesting example of self-organised building;
  • James Dyke, The Daisystat: A Model to Explore Multidimensional Homeostasis (James: you should put your talks up on YouTube!);
  • Matthew Bardeen, Patch-level Selection in Darwinian Daisyworld – some interesting results on an old favourite;
  • Craig Reynolds, Interactive Evolution of Camouflage (yes…THE Craig Reynolds);
  • James Whitacre, Genetic and Environment-Induced Innovation: Complementary Pathways to Adaptive Change that are Facilitated by Degeneracy in Multi-Agent Systems
  • Reiji Suzuki and Takaya Arita, Eff ects of Temporal Locality of Ecological Processes on Coevolution of Learning and Niche Construction;

No doubt, there were many other interesting papers, but those parallel sessions made it difficult to see every presentation. Hopefully something the organisers will consider for the next conference. All up though, a very interesting conference that shows Alife research, while very different now from its origins (under the “Artificial Life” banner at least), still has some relevant things to say about life.