in Artificial Life: The Proceedings of an Interdisciplinary Workshop on the Synthesis and Simulation of Living Systems; Charles G. Langton, editor
Artificial Life is the study of synthetic systems that exhibit behaviors characteristics of natural living systems. It complements the traditional biological sciences concerned with the analysis of living organisms by attempting to synthesize lifelike behaviors within computers and other artificial media. By extending the empirical foundation upon which biology is based beyond the carbon-chain of life that has evolved on Earth, Artificial Life can contribute to theoretical biology by locating ”life as we know it” within the larger picture of ”life as it could be.”This book——The Proceedings of an Interdisciplinary Workshop On The Synthesis and Simulation of Living Systems—introduces the field of Artificial Life, reviews its biological roots, discusses its goals and methodological approaches, and gives examples of modeling technologies and their application to the simulation of specific biological phenomena. It draws comparisons with similar ”bottom up” approaches to the understanding of complex systems as studied in fields such as Physics, Computer Science, and Artificial Intelligence. The book also contains an extensive annotated bibliography of more than 500 citations of work relevant to the field of Artificial Life.