Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources


Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering

Committee Chair

Stephanie Schuckers.


Biological neural networks have always motivated creation of new artificial neural networks, and in this case a new autonomous temporal neural network system. Among the more challenging problems of temporal neural networks are the design and incorporation of short and long-term memories as well as the choice of network topology and training mechanism. In general, delayed copies of network signals can form short-term memory (STM), providing a limited temporal history of events similar to FIR filters, whereas the synaptic connection strengths as well as delayed feedback loops (ER circuits) can constitute longer-term memories (LTM). This dissertation introduces a new general evolutionary temporal neural network framework (GETnet) through automatic design of arbitrary neural networks with STM and LTM. GETnet is a step towards realization of general intelligent systems that need minimum or no human intervention and can be applied to a broad range of problems. GETnet utilizes nonlinear moving average/autoregressive nodes and sub-circuits that are trained by enhanced gradient descent and evolutionary search in terms of architecture, synaptic delay, and synaptic weight spaces. The mixture of Lamarckian and Darwinian evolutionary mechanisms facilitates the Baldwin effect and speeds up the hybrid training. The ability to evolve arbitrary adaptive time-delay connections enables GETnet to find novel answers to many classification and system identification tasks expressed in the general form of desired multidimensional input and output signals. Simulations using Mackey-Glass chaotic time series and fingerprint perspiration-induced temporal variations are given to demonstrate the above stated capabilities of GETnet.