Genetic data-structures and simulated procreation are employed to create a highly intuitive concept – new shapes can be bred simply by selecting or scoring objects from successive populations.

EvoShape runs within a CAD system, generating and evolving populations of 3D solid objects. It uses a specialised Genetic Algorithm to combine geometric primitives using Boolean interactions and advanced blending operations. The primary influence on evolution is the user, hence the term Interactive Evolutionary Design is often used to describe this type of technology.

The first population of shapes are either loaded in from a previous session or generated automatically by EvoShape. In the latter case this first population contains the widest variety of objects possible, maximising the choice for the user. These shapes can quickly be refined by eliminating inappropriate shapes and selecting favourite shapes to breed from. The user can also be a little more subtle in their control by allocating scores to the shapes – the higher the score the more likely the shape will be selected as a parent when generating the next population (and the hotter the colour of the shape on the screen). When the user has finished selecting and scoring, EvoShape employs simulated genetic crossover and mutation on pairs of objects to produce pairs of children. This is repeated 6 times to produce new populations of 12 objects (the best 9 of which are displayed to the user).

Despite this lengthy technical explanation, EvoShape is conceptually very simple – most people are familiar with the idea of farmers selecting the best stock to breed from, and gardeners cross-pollinating favourite plant varieties. In practice EvoShape is extremely quick, especially when using the intuitive touch-screen interface. Unique and inspirational 3D forms can be produced by designers and non-designers alike within a few generations and a mater of minutes.

See also

R & D

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