To enhance the search performance of evolutionary algorithms, reusing knowledge captured from past optimization experiences along the search process has been proposed in the literature, and demonstrated much promise. In the literature, there are generally three types of approaches for reusing knowledge from past search experiences, namely exact storage and reuse of past solutions, the reuse of model-based information, and the reuse of structured knowledge captured from past optimized solutions. In this paper, we focus on the third type of knowledge reuse for enhancing evolutionary search. In contrast to existing works, here we focus on knowledge transfer across heterogeneous continuous optimization problems with diverse properties, such as problem dimension, number of objectives, etc., that cannot be handled by existing approaches. In particular, we propose a novel autoencoding evolutionary search paradigm with learning capability across heterogeneous problems. The essential ingredient for learning structured knowledge from search experience in our proposed paradigm is a single layer denoising autoencoder (DA), which is able to build the connections between problem domains by treating past optimized solutions as the corrupted version of the solutions for the newly encountered problem. Further, as the derived DA holds a closed-form solution, the corresponding reusing of knowledge from past search experiences will not bring much additional computational burden on the evolutionary search. To evaluate the proposed search paradigm, comprehensive empirical studies on the complex multiobjective optimization problems are presented, along with a real-world case study from the fiber-reinforced polymer composites manufacturing industry.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.