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Research proposal: Darwin vs. DARPA: Evolution of a Neural Controller to play Tetris

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posted on 2013-02-19, 23:31 authored by Randy OlsonRandy Olson, David Knoester, Arend Hintze, Risto Miikkulainen, Christoph AdamiChristoph Adami

The goal of the DARPA-funded SyNAPSE project is to build a microprocessor-based machine that mimics many of the characteristics of biological neural networks (i.e., high connectivity, synapse plastic- ity, and scale). The proposed device is termed a neuromorphic machine, and recent simulations have indeed approached biological scale. However, while SyNAPSE has been demonstrated on a variety of tasks, from optical character recognition and classification to control of quadrotor helicopters, it has done so at a cost of $42 million. In contrast, the BEACON-funded DvD (“Darwin vs. DARPA”) project has demonstrated the evolution of logic circuits that outperform SyNAPSE on optical character recognition for 1/1000th of the cost. In this phase of the DvD project, we now turn our attention to a more complex task: Evolving logic circuits that play the computer game “Tetris.”