Post-Conference Info

The Best Paper Award: The Segmental-Transmission-Line: Its Design and Prototype Evaluation by Moritoshi Yasunaga, Yoshiki Yamaguchi, Hiroshi Nakayama (University of Tsukuba, Japan), Ikuo Yoshihara, Naoki Koizumi (Miyazaki University, Japan), Jung H. Kim (University of Arkansas, USA)

Tutorials will be available online, see Tutorials.


The idea of evolving machines, whose origins can be traced to the cybernetics movement of the 1940s and the 1950s, has recently resurged in the form of the nascent field of bio-inspired systems and evolvable hardware. The inaugural workshop, Towards Evolvable Hardware, took place in Lausanne in October 1995, and was followed by the First International Conference on Evolvable Systems: From Biology to Hardware (ICES96), which was held in Japan in October 1996. Subsequent conferences were held in Lausanne (1998), Edinburgh (2000), Tokyo (2001), Trondheim (2003), Barcelona (2005) and Wuhan (2007). This has become the leading conference in the field of evolvable systems.

The ICES 2008 conference will build on the success of its predecessors by bringing together researchers who combine biologically inspired concepts with hardware and presenting the latest developments in the field.

The proceedings will be published in Springer's LNCS series.

On Evolvable Hardware

In the mid 1990's, researchers began applying Evolutionary Algorithms (EAs) on a kind of computer chip that could dynamically alter the functionality and physical connections of its circuits. This combination of EAs with programmable electronics (Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) & Field Programmable Analogue Arrays (FPAAs) to give two examples) spawned a new field of Evolutionary Computation (EC) called Evolvable Hardware (EH).

Since that time the EH field has expanded beyond the use of EAs on simple electronic devices to encompass many different combinations of EAs and biologically inspired algorithms (BIAs) with various physical devices (or simulations of physical devices). Present research in the field of EH can be split into the two related areas of Evolvable Hardware Design (EHD) and Adaptive Hardware (AH).

Evolvable Hardware Design (EHD) is the use of EAs and BIAs for creating physical devices and designs, examples of where EHD has had some success include analogue and digital electronics, antennas, MEMS chips, optical systems as well as quantum circuits.

Adaptive Hardware as the name suggests uses EAs and BIAs to endow physical systems with some adaptive characteristics. These adaptive characteristics are required to construct more robust components and systems to allow them to continue to operate successfully in a changing environment. For example, a circuit on an FPGA that "evolved" to heal from radiation damage, an FPAA that can change its function as operational requirements change.

Greg Hornby (March 2008)