Breeding Language

A web page that uses genetic programming to evolve random text strings into the target text. Genetic programming has been used in a number of areas, including automatic programming and electronic circuit design. This is the first time I've seen it applied to plain old English phrases.

The odd part is that the least interesting thing is the result because you already know what it is. More interesting are the most "fit" strings as the generations go by. They tend to resemble the results of Markov programs or Travesty.

The whole thing gets me fantasizing about throwing together a bunch of short stories and having them cross-breed and evolve until something new and even more interesting emerges. Language does many strange and peculiar things when you let it slip a little out of your sight.

N.B. If you try it out, don't put hyphens in your target phrase—they're not in the program's character set. The strings "breed" to a 97% resemblance and stay there forever.


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