Latest in Ai

Image credit:

The SAFE project teaches computers to understand your musical vocab


The vocabulary we use to describe music can be tough enough for a human to grok (really, what does it mean when a guitar riff is "crunchy"?) but a team of tinkerers from Birmingham City University aren't interested in helping people understand that language. Nope -- instead, they've cooked up a way to teach your computer what you mean when you throw around words like "bright" or "fuzzy" or, yes, "crunchy" with a program they call the SAFE Project.

Spearheaded by Dr. Ryan Stables, the SAFE Project in its current form is a plugin for existing audio workstation software that lets would-be music producers apply effects by typing in words instead of fiddling with settings. The real magic happens on the backend, though: once you punch in a word (say, "airy"), the plug-in passes that descriptor along to the team's server, which draws upon the power of the crowd to give your music a twist. That's right, the crowd: the secret sauce of the project is that it draws on settings presets that users tag and upload to continually redefine what aural effects those words actually describe. In a way, it's almost like a living musical brain living in the cloud you can call upon when your music needs some pizzazz, and it's only getting better. Stables says the team is working on a way to let users suss out the sonic spaces between words by applying effects that are partway between two descriptors.

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr