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Evolutionary Computation

Fall 2002, Vol. 10, No. 3, Pages 283-314
(doi: 10.1162/106365602760234117)
© 2002 Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Improved Sampling of the Pareto-Front in Multiobjective Genetic Optimizations by Steady-State Evolution: A Pareto Converging Genetic Algorithm
Article PDF (380.51 KB)
Abstract

Previous work on multiobjective genetic algorithms has been focused on preventing genetic drift and the issue of convergence has been given little attention. In this paper, we present a simple steady-state strategy, Pareto Converging Genetic Algorithm (PCGA), which naturally samples the solution space and ensures population advancement towards the Pareto-front. PCGA eliminates the need for sharing/niching and thus minimizes heuristically chosen parameters and procedures. A systematic approach based on histograms of rank is introduced for assessing convergence to the Pareto-front, which, by definition, is unknown in most real search problems. We argue that there is always a certain inheritance of genetic material belonging to a population, and there is unlikely to be any significant gain beyond some point; a stopping criterion where terminating the computation is suggested. For further encouraging diversity and competition, a nonmigrating island model may optionally be used; this approach is particularly suited to many difficult (real-world) problems, which have a tendency to get stuck at (unknown) local minima. Results on three benchmark problems are presented and compared with those of earlier approaches. PCGA is found to produce diverse sampling of the Pareto-front without niching and with significantly less computational effort.