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Otomata sequencer creates generative music for the melodically challenged (video)

Christopher Trout, @Mr_Trout
April 19, 2011
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It won't bring you the success or adoration that Brian Eno's enjoyed, but the Otomata sequencer could have you making noise like the Roxy Music alum in seconds. Way back in 1996, Eno espoused the idea of generative music, which is a non-repetitive form of music created, in this case, anyway, by a piece of software. Otomata takes that idea and puts it to use in a cellular automaton, consisting of a simple grid of cells in different states. With Otomata, each selected cell has four states: up, down, left, and right. When activated, the cells move in the direction of their given state, and when they encounter an obstacle, like a wall, a pitched sound is created. After each collision, the cells turn around and head in the opposite direction until they hit another obstacle, and the process continues indefinitely. The result is a chaotic but somehow lulling symphony of electronic sounds, a la Mr. Eno, that anyone with a mouse can muster. Head on past the break to see for yourself.





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