Introducing a Gestation Period of Time-Delayed Benefit into an Animat-based Artificial Life Model

Chris J. Scogings and Ken A. Hawick


bio-inspired models, animat, agent-based model, collective behaviour


Bio-inspired models such as animat agent based artificial life models provide a useful platform for exploring collective and emergent phenomena including decision making, financial markets and resource management systems. Breeding mechanisms whereby new animat agents are introduced into the system provide an important mechanism for the system as a whole to adapt to new or changing circumstances. We explore the consequences of decoupling individual animat behaviours in time from their effect on the species and system as a whole by incorporating a gestation period of time delay between animat breeding and animat birth. The breeding system incorporated in previous models enabled instant births. This allowed prey animats to propagate with no regard to their own safety. This research introduces a gestation period, thus requiring animats to keep themselves alive long enough to successfully reproduce. We discuss the consequences for large scale animat models with bio-inspired selection mechanisms based on predator-prey cycles and a spatial mixing environment.

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