Sean Luke


Associate Professor, Department of Computer Science, Volgenau School of Engineering, George Mason University Associate Director, Center for Social Complexity, Krasnow Institute


Web: Personal website  Volgenau page  Google Scholar

Phone:  703-993-4169
Address:  Nguyen Engineering Building, 4436
4400 University Drive, MS 4A5
Fairfax, VA 22030


Sean Luke’s research involves the design and application of computational models of Darwinian-like models of evolution. Such models can be used to better understand existing evolutionary systems (such as bacterial resistance to penicillin) or can be used to make computer systems more robust, flexible and adaptive (such as a stock market trading program). In this lab, Luke examines information exchange relationships in the natural world for application opportunities in computer science. Additionally, as an associate director at the George Mason Krasnow Institute’s Center for Social Complexity, Luke’s research and collaboration isolates new theories about human social interaction for use in multi-agent networks and computer reasoning.


ECLab GMU’s Evolutionary Computation Laboratory

The GMU Autonomous Robotics Laboratory


Essentials of Metaheuristics 

Online version 2.2 (Now out in paperback)

About the Book

This is an open set of lecture notes on metaheuristics algorithms, intended for undergraduate students, practitioners, programmers, and other non-experts. It was developed as a series of lecture notes for an undergraduate course I taught at GMU. The chapters are designed to be printable separately if necessary. As it’s lecture notes, the topics are short and light on examples and theory. It’s best when complementing other texts. With time, I might remedy this.

What is a Metaheuristic?

A common but unfortunate name for any stochastic optimization algorithm intended to be the last resort before giving up and using random or brute-force search. Such algorithms are used for problems where you don’t know how to find a good solution, but if shown a candidate solution, you can give it a grade. The algorithmic family includes genetic algorithms, hill-climbing, simulated annealing, ant colony optimization, particle swarm optimization, and so on.

How to Buy the Book


Essentials of Metaheuristics, Second Edition is available at these fine internet retailers:

  • for a mere $20.00 plus $4 in shipping. This is my recommended method.
  • for $25.00 plus free shipping. (Yes, that’s my affiliate link)


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