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SynthFest France: Making Generative Music on iOS

YouTuber SynthFest France did an impressive experiment with self-generative music. I know that this really is impressive, because I found it yesterday. I was quite impressed even when I wasn't dealing with eye pain and high. The idea that software can just make these melodies happen without artistic intervention is equal parts amazing and alarming.

Video Description:

Self-generating experimental music. No external controller. Only music apps, triggered by real time MIDI event generators. The FRMS application (multi-layer granular synthesizer) receives MIDI notes from an instance of Fugue Machine. The second instance of Fuge Machine generates events for Skaka (percussion sound module). The groove box DrumComputer loops on a beat with some random modulations. A melody (glassy sound) is generated by the Kronecker synthesizer which receives events from Autony (a semi-random MIDI event generator). The second Autony generator controls the melody (string) played by Aparillo. The whole thing is mixed in AUM and recorded for 4 minutes.

Programmation & one shot real time performance by Nanisound François Astier.

SynthFest France © Copyright SynthFest France, all rights reserved.

Reader Comments 5

“ The idea that software can just make these melodies happen without artistic intervention is equal parts amazing and alarming.”

I agree to a point Tim. The skill in this case is not so much the melodies created but the atmosphere and great tonal and sound design choices.
December 01, 2020  | person That guy
On December 01, 2020 - @That guy said:
“ The idea that software can just make these melodies happen without artistic intervention is equal parts amazing and alarming.”

I agree to a point Tim. The skill in this case is not so much the melodies created but the atmosphere and great tonal and sound design choices.
Yes! And he certainly deserves credit on that score!

I've spent all of 2020 studying Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning. I'm a philosopher at heart, so I'm always thinking about the implications. There are many. Some are grand like the common, "OMFG THE AI IS GOING TO KILL US ALL!" But some are tiny. Almost imperceptible. A whispered phrase, and already half forgotten. Something about man's inhumanity to man? Was it the AI's inhumanity to man? Or was it that the AI made man inhuman?

All of the great AI theories have a name. There's the Control Problem, or Alignment Problem, which is the classic "AI WILL KILL US ALL!" because we can't control it, or align it to our goals. This also includes mistaken directives to make Paper Clips. There's also the Centaur theory. This is when we combine with the AI, rather than think of it as some other entity. By combining our strengths we become better than the sum of our parts. You picked up on this naturally. You correctly identified the human is still bringing creative skills to the Centaur union. On the other hand, there are reasons to suspect this could lead to a fate worse than death. The AI doesn't kill us, it dehumanizes us.

This is what I meant by it being both, "amazing and alarming." I wish I was more optimistic and just saw it your way, but I know the high probability of it going the other way. So I'm both hopeful and terrified.

Whatever. We'll find out soon enough. It's Pandora's Box. Or fruit of the Tree of Knowledge. We can't help but open it. The game is rigged. The unbounded curiosity of our nature is both the pinnacle and fulcrum. There's just no fucking way we're not going to take a bite.

I wonder if that's really what the old Abrahamic myth was all about. A millennia old prophecy, told to a primitive apeman in a desert with barely more technology than any other primate. All these bits about a snake were an effort to explain, "Look your species is going to invent a big calculator that can outthink, outplay, and outmaneuver you all. Maybe, try not doing that? Have you considered all of the benefits of ignorance? What do you mean, 'What's a calculator?'"

I'm poetic on cannabis. Is this cheesy? I'm worried that it might be cheesy. I can't tell right now.
I, for one, welcome our murderous music making AI overlords.
December 02, 2020  | favorite_border Tony
Tim you are not cheesy at all you bring up extremely valid points. I have seen as you have seen music devices improve and become so complex that they create the music on their own.

I am a little worried the Implications of this not so much in music but in “many other” applications particularly military.

I guess we will have to wait and see how people act post COVID personally I would like the focus to turn from big capitalism to an easier life for all of us. Maybe there is still hope for us after all.
December 03, 2020  | person That guy
Wotja is cool too but I find I make new age music and am confused. Hails generative and random AI!
December 05, 2020  | person Oceans in space
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