Friday, November 5, 2010

Mozart meets Darwin - Creating music by evolution

Mozart meets Darwin is a case study where we try to evolve a piece of music, a simple melody. To evolve something, we need a model of the canditates, a method to mutate a candidate (that is apply some random perturbations), a method to recombine two parent candidates into similar children canditates, and a way to assess the fitness of a result. Using the music notes as DNA, we came up with solutions for mutation and recombination. But the assessment of the quality cannot be done by the machine - that is where we need you to indicate which piece of music is better than the other.

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In the application above, you can listen to sets of five examples and rank them according to your personal preference. A computer program on a server will gather the rankings until it has sufficient input to decide how to evolve to the next generation. Mutation and recombination will be the "creativity" of the computer program. Please rank a few sets and get an impression of the approach. If you come back later, you will notice that the music pieces have improved, typically towards the overall music taste - hopefully you like it!
The results will be posted later under the GNU FDL license - so you can use the evolved melody in a song if you like.


  1. Is your application for smart phone only?

  2. The application was developed in Flash and can be run on any device supporting it. Here, we have it embedded in the website. For iPhone and Android versions we used Adobe AIR to package it. But the application is not yet available in the App store.