Neuroevolution Demos

Email:Kenneth Stanley / My Homepage


This page links to animations of evolved behaviors based on my neuroevolution research. The first few demos are from experiments run with NEAT (NeuroEvolution of Augmenting Topologies). The last demo is from older research completed before NEAT was developed.

NEAT Demos

Automobile Warning System Demos

Complexification Demo (GIF Animations)

Watch how the evolution of increasingly complex networks using NEAT results in more sophisticated behaviors in a robot duel. View the neurons firing in real time as the robots compete. Also see the related conference paper.

Robot Hall Navigation Demo (GIF Animations)

See robots that were evolved to navigate a simulated hallway using NEAT. Neural networks are shown firing in real time as the robots move. Includes entering a doorway and stopping before a doorway.

Function Approximation Demo (AVI Movie; the link will download the movie)

Watch NEAT neural networks complexify as they approximate a difficult function. See how changing structure contributes to function. Note: This experiment was coded and designed by Mattias Fagerlund, who has made some other NEAT demos available through his web page.

NEAT Hopper Demo (Windows Executable)

Another excellent and entertaining demo of NEAT by Mattias Fagerlund. The hopper, which is like a robo-pogo-stick, learns to do things like travel forward, high jump, and maximize speed. It even can learn how to stand still and balance in an interesting demonstration reminiscent of pole balancing.

I suggest running it first with only the following options checked:

  • Only draw better (only shows you when a champ improves)
  • Real-time draw (draws at a real-world frame rate)
  • Joint limits (doesnt let piece of the hopper move through each other)
  • Foot trace (shows the path it took)
  • Shadows (look nice)

To speed things up, I would also uncheck "multi-run," which doesn't seem necessary. (The program starts with this option checked by default)

The "Forward Distance" fitness measure is probably the best for demonstration purposes, but "Standtime" is also interesting, where the hopper learns to balance without falling. Also make sure you can see both of the two windows. The second window can show species breakdowns or the current champ's topology.

Real-time Interactive Neuroevolution Demo

Peon Demo (AVI Movies)

"Peons," small video game characters that attempt to find goldmines and avoid an enemy, were evolved in real-time as the game progressed. See how they evolved to handle novel enemy strategies and goldmine placement scenarios. These demos are from older research that did not involve complexifying (NEAT) neural networks.