Aesthetic evolutionary design with data flow networks
Lewis, M.: Aesthetic evolutionary design with data flow networks. In: Soddu, C. (ed.) Proc. of Generative Arts (2000).
For a little over a decade, software has been created which allows for the design of visual content by aesthetic evolutionary design (AED). The great majority of these AED systems involve custom software intended for breeding entities within one fairly narrow problem domain, e.g., certain classes of buildings, cars, images, etc. Only a very few generic AED systems have been attempted, and extending them to a new design problem domain can require a significant amount of custom software development. High-end computer graphics software packages have in recent years become sufficiently robust to allow for flexible specification and construction of high-level procedural models. These packages also provide extensibility, allowing for the creation of new software tools. One component of these systems that enables rapid development of new generative models and tools is the visual data flow network. One of the first CG packages to employ this paradigm was Houdini. A system constructed within Houdini that allows for very fast generic specification of evolvable parametric prototypes is described. The real-time nature of the software, when combined with the interlocking data networks, allows not only for vertical ancestor/child populations within the design space to be explored, but also allows for fast horizontal exploration of the potential population surface. Several example problem domains will be presented and discussed.
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