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I started a small toy project[0], that given a black box function: $\mathbb{R}^n \to \mathbb{R}$ tries to find a good approximation (if not exact solution) by evolving expression trees. These expression trees consist of three different kinds of nodes:

  • function inputs ($ n $)
  • functions (addition, multiplication, division, exponentiation, ...)
  • constants

Expression trees are randomly generated, those that have a low average error when comparing their output with the unknown function by random sampling are copied and randomly mutated several times, then selected again.

Possible transformations:

  • node insertion
  • node mutation (changing a constant, or function)
  • node deletion

This approach seems to reconstruct simple functions very quickly.

Do you know any research, algorithms, projects or concepts that are related to this?

[0] https://github.com/void4/rantree

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