EPSRC Network on Evolvability in Biology & Software Systems

Evolvability, Genetics & Development in Natural and Constructed Systems: Abstracts of the EPSRC Evolvability Network Symposium

Tewin Bury Farm Hotel, Hertfordshire, England, UK
26-28 August 2003

University of Hertfordshire Computer Science Technical Report 389
C. L. Nehaniv, P. J. Bentley & S. Kumar (Editors)

Evolvability, Development, Computing and Telecommunications

Evolvability, Development, Computing and Telecommunications


Intelligent Systems Laboratory, BT Exact
Orion 1/12, Adastral Park,
Ipswich IP5 3RE, UK


Why should we study evolvability? We live in a world where we are surrounded by networked systems. Telecommunications, the Internet, power distribution and broadcasting are a ubiquitous part of modern life, and typically form very complex networks. Living systems are also ubiquitous in the natural world, extremely complex and adaptive. We have a challenge of managing the complexity of modern computing and telecommunications systems, and maybe we can learn something from the way in which natural evolutionary systems have become evolvable. In this talk I will discuss examples where ideas from evolution and development inform the design of telecommunications and computing systems. In the process I will consider some of the issues that may affect the evolvability of the systems we wish to change, before considering the area's future implications.