Karl Sims creates digital simulations inspired by evolution.
"Twelve computers simulate the growth and behaviors of a population of abstract animated forms and display them on twelve screens arranged in an arc. The viewers participate in this exhibit by selecting which organisms they find most aesthetically interesting and standing on step sensors in front of those displays. The selected organisms survive, mate, mutate and reproduce. Those not selected are removed, and their computers are inhabited by new offspring from the survivors. The offspring are copies and combinations of their parents, but their genes are altered by random mutations. Sometimes a mutation is favorable, the new organism is more interesting than its ancestors, and is then selected by the viewers. As this evolutionary cycle of reproduction and selection continues, more and more interesting organisms can emerge."1
Genetic Images, 1993
Abstract 3D images evolve based on genetic algorithms and audience choice.
Evolved Virtual Creatures, 1994
Virtual creatures perform tasks that test their abilities — one test, for example, measures creatures' swimming skills. If the creatures perform well, they pass their genes on to the next generation. Over several generations, virtual reproduction and mutation create creatures with skills adapted to the task at hand.
1 Karl Sims, Galapagos.