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Sunderland Repository records the research produced by the University of Sunderland including practice-based research and theses.

Live Algorithms for Music: Can Computers be Improvisers?

Young, Michael and Blackwell, Tim (2016) Live Algorithms for Music: Can Computers be Improvisers? In: The Oxford Handbook of Critical Improvisation Studies. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780199892921

Item Type: Book Section


Computational systems able to collaborate with human improvisers are live algorithms: systems that can cooperate proactively, on an equal basis, with musicians. This definition is an ideal, and it raises fundamental questions about creativity and group interaction, how these might be computationally modelled. Can musicians and computers relate to each other as equivalent partners? Could an audience recognise this relationship? Live algorithms offer the prospect of a new understanding of real- time creative practice. This chapter explores this from various theoretical perspectives. The aims of live algorithm research are contrasted with existing practices in interactive computer music. Social psychology and pragmatics are explored, recognising that music-making, with or without computers, is a social praxis. We tentatively suggest how such perspectives can be represented formally, with the prospect of algorithmic encoding, and we identify improvisation systems currently in use that indicate the future promise of this field.

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Depositing User: Michael Young


Item ID: 6923
Identification Number:
ISBN: 9780199892921
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Catalogue record

Date Deposited: 22 Feb 2017 10:52
Last Modified: 20 May 2019 13:19


Author: Michael Young
Author: Tim Blackwell

University Divisions

Services > University Executive


Computing > Artificial Intelligence
Computing > Human-Computer Interaction
Performing Arts > Music
Fine Art > New Media

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