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Research Paper #707

Title:Improving Evolutionary Timetabling with Delta Evaluation and Directed Mutation
Authors:Ross,PM; Corne,D; Fang,H
Date:Jun 1994
Presented:To appear in Parallel Problem Solving from Nature III, Springer Verlag, 1994
Abstract:Researchers are turning more and more to evolutionary algorithms (EAs) as a flexible and effective technique for addressing timetabling problems in their institutions. We present a class of specialised mutation operators for use in conjunction with the commonly employed penalty-function based EA approach to timetabling which shows significant improvement in performance over a range of real and realistic problems. We also discuss the use of delta evaluation, an obvious and recommended technique which speeds up the implementation of the approach, and leads to more pertinent measure of speed than the commonly used "number of evaluations". A suite of realistically difficult benchmark timetabling problems is described and made available for use in comparative research.

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