How Google Is Making Music With Artificial Intelligence

Can computers be creative? Artificial intelligence is able make music and artwork that people find pleasing. Last year, Google launched Magenta, a research project aimed at pushing the limits of what AI can do in the arts. The model for the creative AI is based on different kinds of machine learning techniques. The NSynth algorithm uses neural networks to synthesize new sounds on notes generated by different instruments. The SketchRNN algorithm was trained on millions of drawings from a game called Quick, Draw! The most recent music algorithm, called Performance RNN, was trained on classical piano performances captured on a modern player piano. The most surprising result is how expressive the short compositions were from the Performance RNN algorithm. Because the AI trained on real performances captured in MIDI on real pianos, the AI was able to generate sequences with realistic timing and dynamics.

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