Neuroevolution of an Automobile Crash Warning System (2005)
Many serious automobile accidents could be avoided if drivers were warned of impending crashes before they occurred. In this paper, a vehicle warning system is evolved to predict such crashes in the RARS driving simulator. The NeuroEvolution of Augmenting Topologies (NEAT) method is first used to evolve a neural network driver that can autonomously navigate a track without crashing. The network is subsequently impaired, resulting in a driver that occasionally makes mistakes and crashes. Using this impaired driver, a crash predictor is evolved that can predict how far in the future a crash is going to occur, information that can be used to generate an appropriate warning level. The main result is that NEAT can successfully evolve a warning system that takes into account the recent history of inputs and outputs, and therefore makes few errors. Experiments were also run to compare training offline from previously collected data with training online in the simulator. While both methods result in successful warning systems, offline training is both faster and more accurate. Thus, the results in this paper set the stage for developing crash predictors that are both accurate and able to adapt online, which may someday save lives in real vehicles.
In Proceedings of the Genetic and Evolutionary Computation Conference 2005.

Nate Kohl Ph.D. Alumni nate [at] natekohl net
Risto Miikkulainen Faculty risto [at] cs utexas edu
Rini Sherony Formerly affiliated Collaborator rini sherony [at] tema toyota com
Kenneth Stanley Postdoctoral Alumni kstanley [at] cs ucf edu
NEAT C++ The NEAT package contains source code implementing the NeuroEvolution of Augmenting Topologies method. The source code i... 2010