Earlier this week I stumbled upon a highly interesting research by Richard Gatarski, now assistant professor at School of Business, Stockholm University.
The research, actually over 5 years old is about evolutionary banner design. That is, using genetic algorithms to design advertisement banners in order to maximize their click-through rates.
Browsing through material on genetic computer methods I have on several occasions encountered a very interesting phenomenon – genetic methods that exploit flaws in their environment to help achieving their goals.
Using genetic methods, people try to “breed” software that best meets the task that is to be solved (the goal), just like nature’s evolution processes breed animals that are best fit to survive in their natural environment. In this process nothing is “forbidden”, the individuals can try whatever means available to them to seek the optimal solution, and in the case of a computer environment that can mean exploiting unknown or at least not-intended-to-use flaws in the environment’s design.