The other day at the DeepMind blog, someone came up with an idea for improving Waymo’s self-driving cars: Evolution
Waymo’s self-driving vehicles employ neural networks to perform many driving tasks, from detecting objects and predicting how others will behave, to planning a car’s next moves. Training an individual neural net has traditionally required weeks of fine-tuning and experimentation, as well as enormous amounts of computational power. Now, Waymo, in a research collaboration with DeepMind, has taken inspiration from Darwin’s insights into evolution to make this training more effective and efficient.YU-HSIN CHEN, “HOW EVOLUTIONARY SELECTION CAN TRAIN MORE CAPABLE SELF-DRIVING CARS” AT DEEPMIND BLOG
If the researchers have specific goals in mind, they are acting as goal-directed intelligent designers. They are using a mechanism (which they call Darwinian natural selection) to produce a specific outcome. It may work; we shall see. But it is not natural evolution in general.
One reason for confusion is that, quite often, school systems have tended to teach only a dumbed-down version of evolution: the natural selection to which the researchers refer.
Another reason to revamp Darwin-only curricula.