Differential Evolution (DE) is arguably one of the most powerful and versatile evolutionary optimizers for the continuous parameter spaces in recent times. Almost 5 years have passed since the first comprehensive survey article was published on DE by Das and Suganthan in 2011. Several developments have been reported on various aspects of the algorithm in these 5 years and the research on and with DE have now reached an impressive state. Considering the huge progress of research with DE and its applications in diverse domains of science and technology, we find that it is a high time to provide a critical review of the latest literatures published and also to point out some important future avenues of research. The purpose of this paper is to summarize and organize the information on these current developments on DE. Beginning with a comprehensive foundation of the basic DE family of algorithms, we proceed through the recent proposals on parameter adaptation of DE, DE-based single-objective global optimizers, DE adopted for various optimization scenarios including constrained, large-scale, multi-objective, multi-modal and dynamic optimization, hybridization of DE with other optimizers, and also the multi-faceted literature on applications of DE. The paper also presents a dozen of interesting open problems and future research issues on DE.
SHADE is an adaptive DE which incorporates success-history based parameter adaptation and one of the state-of-the-art DE algorithms. This paper proposes L-SHADE, which further extends SHADE with Linear Population Size Reduction (LPSR), which continually decreases the population size according to a linear function. We evaluated the performance of L-SHADE on CEC2014 benchmarks and compared its search performance with state-of-the-art DE algorithms, as well as the state-of-the-art restart CMA-ES variants. The experimental results show that L-SHADE is quite competitive with state-of-the-art evolutionary algorithms.
Cooperative co-evolution has been introduced into evolutionary algorithms with the aim of solving increasingly complex optimization problems through a divide-and-conquer paradigm. In theory, the idea of co-adapted subcomponents is desirable for solving large-scale optimization problems. However, in practice, without prior knowledge about the problem, it is not clear how the problem should be decomposed. In this paper, we propose an automatic decomposition strategy called differential grouping that can uncover the underlying interaction structure of the decision variables and form subcomponents such that the interdependence between them is kept to a minimum. We show mathematically how such a decomposition strategy can be derived from a definition of partial separability. The empirical studies show that such near-optimal decomposition can greatly improve the solution quality on large-scale global optimization problems. Finally, we show how such an automated decomposition allows for a better approximation of the contribution of various subcomponents, leading to a more efficient assignment of the computational budget to various subcomponents.
Differential evolution (DE) is among the most efficient evolutionary algorithms (EAs) for global optimization and now widely applied to solve diverse real-world applications. As the most appropriate configuration of DE to efficiently solve different optimization problems can be significantly different, an appropriate combination of multiple strategies into one DE variant attracts increasing attention recently. In this study, we propose a multi-population based approach to realize an ensemble of multiple strategies, thereby resulting in a new DE variant named multi-population ensemble DE (MPEDE) which simultaneously consists of three mutation strategies, i.e., “current-to-pbest/1” and “current-to-rand/1” and “rand/1”. There are three equally sized smaller indicator subpopulations and one much larger reward subpopulation. Each constituent mutation strategy has one indicator subpopulation. After every certain number of generations, the current best performing mutation strategy will be determined according to the ratios between fitness improvements and consumed function evaluations. Then the reward subpopulation will be allocated to the determined best performing mutation strategy dynamically. As a result, better mutation strategies obtain more computational resources in an adaptive manner during the evolution. The control parameters of each mutation strategy are adapted independently as well. Extensive experiments on the suit of CEC 2005 benchmark functions and comprehensive comparisons with several other efficient DE variants show the competitive performance of the proposed MPEDE (Matlab codes of MPEDE are available from http://guohuawunudt.gotoip2.com/publications.html).
Differential evolution (DE) is a well-known optimization algorithm that utilizes the difference of positions between individuals to perturb base vectors and thus generate new mutant individuals. However, the difference between the fitness values of individuals, which may be helpful to improve the performance of the algorithm, has not been used to tune parameters and choose mutation strategies. In this paper, we propose a novel variant of DE with an individual-dependent mechanism that includes an individual-dependent parameter (IDP) setting and an individual-dependent mutation (IDM) strategy. In the IDP setting, control parameters are set for individuals according to the differences in their fitness values. In the IDM strategy, four mutation operators with different searching characteristics are assigned to the superior and inferior individuals, respectively, at different stages of the evolution process. The performance of the proposed algorithm is then extensively evaluated on a suite of the 28 latest benchmark functions developed for the 2013 Congress on Evolutionary Computation special session. Experimental results demonstrate the algorithm's outstanding performance.