Evolution window

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It was observed in evolution strategies that significant progress toward the fitness/objective function's optimum, generally, can only happen in a narrow band of the mutation step size σ. That narrow band is called evolution window.

There are three well-known methods to adapt the mutation step size σ in evolution strategies:

  • (1/5-th) Success Rule
  • Self-Adaptation (for example through log-normal mutations)
  • Cumulative Step Size Adaptation (CSA)

On simple functions all of them have been empirically shown to keep the step size within the evolution window.

See also[edit]


  • H.-G. Beyer. Toward a Theory of Evolution Strategies: Self-Adaptation. Evolutionary Computation, 3(3), 311-347.
  • Ingo Rechenberg: Evolutionsstrategie '94. Stuttgart: Frommann-Holzboog 1994.