We probably shouldn't have been surprised when David Cope excitedly asked us if we'd like to see his new iPad app, as we began packing up our shoot for a forthcoming Engadget Show episode. After all, the former UC Santa Cruz music professor's name has, over the past several decades, become closely tied to the world of computer-generated music -- it figures that the journey that began with punch cards would have eventually led to tablets and smartphones.
Jambandit hit the App Store a couple of weeks ago. It's the first offering from Recombinant Inc., a small company co-founded by Cope in Santa Cruz a few years back as a "commercial extension of a body of [his] academic work." His time in the field began during one particularly bad bout with writer's block -- tasked with writing an opera, Cope eschewed traditional paths for the earnest development of a new system for creating music, working to create a software program that could generate scores in the styles of different composer -- a move that, unsurprisingly, opened up a slew of questions on the subject of creativity.