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214 VLSI Test Principles and Architectures fitness metric can mislead the GA to arrive at a suboptimal solution, or even no solution at all. For instance, a population whose individuals’ fitnesses are similar will not allow the selection process to identify more highly fit individuals to act as parents. Furthermore, without a metric, the individuals may become indistinguish- able even when they really are distinguishable. For example, if the fitness function is simply a binary function, where an individual’s fitness is equal to one if the target fault is excited and zero otherwise, this will result in many individuals with fitness equal to zero if they do not excite the target fault. It is clear, however, that some individuals may be closer to exciting the target fault than others. However, the aforementioned binary fitness function would prevent the GA from distinguishing those more fit individuals from the less fit ones.
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