Monday, March 13, 2006

Computer: Evolve!

Nice application of evolutionary algorithms:

To that end, Bonabeau is trying to build applications compelling enough that people will take the time and get the results they want. One of his first applications, demonstrated at the O'Reilly conference, is a filter for images that allows a naive user to improve digital photos without understanding complex tools like Adobe Photoshop, by choosing from mutations of the picture to make it better. "My grandmother doesn't know anything about improving pictures," says Bonabeau, "but she knows which pictures of her grandchildren she likes."
Other planned offerings from Icosystem include an interior-decorating aid and name-selecting software that checks whois information as well as patent and trademark data to make sure company names are available as .coms and are not trademarked.

In France, the hunch engine has already been used by postal workers to build optimal carrier routes that fulfill management's requirements, while allowing workers to optimize for intangible benefits. "There could be a nice family or a cafe they liked," says Bonabeau.