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Across neighbourhood search for numerical optimization

by   Guohua Wu, et al.

Population-based search algorithms (PBSAs), including swarm intelligence algorithms (SIAs) and evolutionary algorithms (EAs), are competitive alternatives for solving complex optimization problems and they have been widely applied to real-world optimization problems in different fields. In this study, a novel population-based across neighbourhood search (ANS) is proposed for numerical optimization. ANS is motivated by two straightforward assumptions and three important issues raised in improving and designing efficient PBSAs. In ANS, a group of individuals collaboratively search the solution space for an optimal solution of the optimization problem considered. A collection of superior solutions found by individuals so far is maintained and updated dynamically. At each generation, an individual directly searches across the neighbourhoods of multiple superior solutions with the guidance of a Gaussian distribution. This search manner is referred to as across neighbourhood search. The characteristics of ANS are discussed and the concept comparisons with other PBSAs are given. The principle behind ANS is simple. Moreover, ANS is easy for implementation and application with three parameters being required to tune. Extensive experiments on 18 benchmark optimization functions of different types show that ANS has well balanced exploration and exploitation capabilities and performs competitively compared with many efficient PBSAs (Related Matlab codes used in the experiments are available from


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