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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

12.15 - Chandra Lunch

We have lunch at Morton Fig's, a new restaurant on campus, to celebrate Chandra Rajagopal's graduation with a Masters degree in Electrical Engineering.  Chandra has been active in helping out with the DIP and Mimi projects, and has developed his research on analysis of music performed on piano vs. guitar since the ISE 575 class last Spring.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

12.02 - Katie in Viterbi News

KatieAnna Wolf appears in the Viterbi news item:

DREU Project Participant Finalist in CRA Student Competion — Distributed Research Experience for Undergraduates program brings standout Minnesota student to Viterbi

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

11.30 - Katie is a CRA Outstanding Undergraduates Award Finalist

KatieAnna Wolf is selected as a Finalist in the Computing Research Association's Outstanding Undergraduate Researcher Award competition for 2011. Congratulations, Katie!

Katie was a DREU summer research fellow at MuCoaCo. She is the second MuCoaCo student to receive this honor; Anna Cheng-Zhi Huang was a Finalist in 2006.

According to the award letter, "This year's nominees were a very impressive group. A number of them were commended for making significant contributions to more than one research project, several were authors or coauthors on multiple papers, others had made presentations at major conferences, and some had produced software artifacts that were in widespread use. Many of our nominees had been involved in successful summer research or internship programs, many had been teaching assistants, tutors, or mentors, and a number had significant involvement in community volunteer efforts. It is quite an honor to be selected a Finalist from this group.

Monday, November 22, 2010

11.22 - ISE 495b KUSC Project

Tianqi Gao and Brad Kuntz, seniors in ISE, were given the KUSC project for the Senior Design class, ISE 495ab.  KUSC is currently the non-profit classical radio station with the largest listener base.  Their task was to find ways to integrated new media into KUSC's current programs to attract younger listeners, especially those in the 30-45 age range.  They were advised by Prof. Chew, and gave their presentation to the class this morning.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

11.21 - Discover USC & Engineering Expo

MuCoaCo is part of the university-wide open house. Introductions to and demonstrations of Mimi and MuSA.RT by Isaac Schankler (DMA MUCO '10), Jordan Smith (PhD candidate, ISE), Tim Brochier (Junior, EE, minor in Music Industry), and Chandra Rajagopal (MS EE) take place on the half hour between 1pm and 4pm.

Jordan turns out to be a natural at addressing the audiences, Isaac wowed the visitors with his Mimi improvisations, and Tim and Chandra manned the recording station.  In all, they represented a wide spectrum of experiences and backgrounds to show the multidisciplinary opportunities in music engineering research.  We had a surprise visitor, Chandra's dad, who is visiting from San Diego / Australia.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

11.07 - Cambridge Brunch

Elaine Chew met with Anna Huang and Jonathan Bragg over brunch at Zoe's.  Anna has just passed her qualifying exams in Computer Science at Harvard, and Jonathan is now in his second year of oboe studies at the New England Conservatory.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

11.05/06 - Prosody and Dialog in Language and Music

Elaine Chew and Alexandre François co-organize an Exploratory Seminar on Prosody and Dialog in Language and Music at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University.  The seminar brings together scientists, humanists, and artists to examine prosody and dialog in language and music from multiple ideological, scholarly, and technical perspectives with the goal of creating new avenues for scholarly exploration

During the two-day seminar, the participants were treated to a beautiful performance of Persian music on the tar by Bahman Panahi, artist-in-residence at the Harvard Music Department, thanks to Richard Wolf.

Following the introductory presentations of the first day were stimulating discussions at lunch and in the conference room on the connections between music and speech, and future directions for exploration.

11.06 - Jordan @ SMT

Jordan Smith and Chandra Rajagopal stand in front of Jordan's SMT poster on the brick wall at the MuCoaCo Lab
Jordan travels to Indianapolis for the Society of Music Theory meeting and presents a poster on A Comparison and Evaluation of Approaches to the Automatic Formal Analysis of Musical Audio, work based on his Masters thesis with Ichiro Fujinaga at McGill University.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

10.07 - Anja Volk awarded Vidi grant

MuCoaCo alum, Anja Volk, is awarded a highly competitive Vidi grant by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO).  See the press release.

The Vidi grant is "targeted at researchers who have completed their doctorates and already spent some years conducting post-doctoral research, thereby demonstrating the ability to generate new ideas and bring them independently to fruition. They will be given the opportunity to develop their own innovative lines of research and themselves to appoint one or more researchers to assist them in the task."

Anja was a WiSE postdoc in the MuCoaCo Lab at USC 2003 to 2005.  She joined the University of Utrecht's Department of Information and Computing Sciences in the Netherlands to co-lead the NWO-funded WITCHCRAFT project from 2006 to the present.

The Vidi grant will enable Anja to start her own research group to "model music similarity over time using the variation principle."  See the project description.  Congratulations, Anja!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

09.30 - Mimi Concert Video Annotated

Video of the concert debut of Mimi with Isaac Schankler at the Boston Court Performing Arts Center in Pasadena on Saturday, June 5, 2010, as part of the People Inside Electronics concert event, Vicious Circles and Deadly Elements.

Mimi, which stands for multimodal interaction for musical improvisation, is a system for human-machine improvisation.  Mimi was created by Alexandre François using his Software Architecture for Immersipresence.

In Mimi, the computer learns from the human musician, creates a factor oracle from the music input, and recombines the material to generate improvisations like the music it 'hears'.  The visualizations show the music stream from the computer and from the human, the music material Mimi learns, and how the system recombines the material. 

The human musician determines when Mimi learns, when it starts/stops improvising, and the recombination rate.  The annotations in the video provided by Isaac shows this decision process, and reveals the improviser's thought process as the performance unfolds.

Isaac is a composer-pianist-improviser who received his DMA in Composition from the USC Thornton School of Music in 2010; he is currently a research consultant at MuCoaCo.

09.30 - Chinghua wins Grace Hopper Best Paper Award

MuCoaCo alum, Ching-Hua Chuan, receives the Grace Hopper Best New Investigator Paper Award at the Grace Hopper Celebration for her paper titled "Hybrid Methods for Generating and Evaluating Style-Specific Accompaniment." Ching-Hua is pictured above with Anna Huang (another MuCoaCo alum) and Sunny Tsai at the Grace Hopper Celebration 2010.

Ching-Hua was a doctoral student at the MuCoaCo Lab 2004-2008.  She was an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Barry University 2008-2010, during which she was featured in the Barry Magazine.

Ching-Hua recently started a new job as Assistant Professor in the School of Computing at the University of North Florida.

Congratulations, Ching-Hua!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

09.25 - CMS/ATMI Joint Meeting in Minneapolis

Elaine Chew gives the Technology Plenary Lecture at the Joint Association for Technology in Musical Instruction - College Music Society Joint Meeting in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  While there, she met up with Katie Wolf.  Pictures to come ...

A review of ATMI 2010 by Barbara Freedman on MusicEdTech can be found here.  An excerpt from the review:
"The CMS/ATMI Technology Lecture/Plenary Speaker was Dr. Elaine Chew of USC (http://www-bcf.usc.edu/~echew/). Her session was entitled De-mystifying Music and Its Performance through Science and Technology. I don’t think I can describe how outstanding this presentation was in every aspect and detail. Her beautifully calm, confident manner had well placed humor. The multimedia slides and transitions to live display were outstanding and well paced. The content was so engaging and simply gorgeous to watch how she and her colleagues were able to conceive and capture a visual representation of music and human expression of music in various stages of creation and recreation. This presentation was a stunningly beautiful and a brilliant display of sheer intelligence, musicianship and grace. It left me speechless. Brava Dr. Chew."

Friday, September 24, 2010

09.24 - NAE US FOE Symposium

Elaine Chew was an invited speaker at the 2010 NAE FOE Symposium at the IBM Learning Center in Armonk, NY.
From September 23 to 25, 'about 100 outstanding engineers under the age of 45 met for an intensive 2-1/2 day symposium to discuss cutting-edge developments in four areas: Cloud Computing, Engineering and Music, Autonomous Aerospace Systems, and Engineering Inspired by Biology.'
Elaine's talk in the session on Engineering and Music was titled "De-mystifying Music and Its Performance."  The paper based on her talk and the presentation slides can be downloaded from the program website.

A version of the paper has been selected to appear in the winter issue of The Bridge, the NAE quarterly, which is 'disseminated to NAE members, government agencies, members of Congress, libraries, university departments, and a wide range of interested individuals (about 7,000 in all).'
These and more photos by the symposium photographer have been posted on the NAE Frontiers website.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

08.19 - Geraint Wiggins

Geraint Wiggins, Professor of Computational Creativity in the Department of Computing in Goldsmiths, University of London, visits the MuCoaCo Lab at USC and gives a seminar on Computational Creativity through a Model of Music Cognition.

Friday, August 13, 2010

08.13 - Katie's Poster @ ISMIR in Utrecht

KatieAnna Wolf presents a poster on "Evaluation of Performance-to-Score MIDI Alignment of Piano Duets" (abstract pdf) in the late breaking / demo session at the 11th ISMIR in Utrecht, the Netherlands.

Katie was a 2010 CRA-W DREU (distributed research experiences for undergraduates) awardee—one of 70 selected from over 500 applicants—and a senior double majoring in Computer Science and Mathematics at the University of Minnesota.

She was at the MuCoaCo Lab over the summer to work on analyzing data from the DIP (distributed immersive performance) project.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

08.12 - Chinghua's Poster @ ISMIR in Utrecht

Ching-Hua Chuan presents a poster on "Quantifying the Benefits of Using an Interactive Decision Support Tool for Creating Musical Accompaniment in a Particular Style" (paper pdf) at the 11th ISMIR in Utrecht, the Netherlands.

Monday, August 9, 2010

08.09 - Anja Volk

Elaine Chew travels to the Netherlands for the ISMIR meeting this year, and meets up with Anja Volk and her family in Amsterdam, and spends a day at the North Sea, prior to the conference.

Friday, July 23, 2010

07.23 - Mimi4x @ IMIDA Workshop

Mimi4x, an interactive installation for high level structural improvisation based on Mimi, is unveiled at IMIDA 2010, an IEEE Conference on Multimedia & Expo workshop.  Alex François and Elaine Chew present the paper:

Francois, A. R. J., I. Schankler, E. Chew (2010). Mimi4x: An Interactive Audio-Visual Installation for High-Level Structural Improvisation. In Proceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Multimedia & Expo (ICME 2010), Singapore, July, 2010.

and demonstrate Mimi4x in Singapore.  The Mimi4x system is also shown in the video below with four sets of music material composed by Isaac Schankler collectively titled Airport:

The paper will be extended and included in a special issue of the International Journal of Arts and Technology.

07.23 - CCRMA Networked Music Performance Workshop

2010.07.19-23: Chandra Rajagopal attends the CCRMA Workshop on Networked Music Performance, where he explored new technologies in networked performance and experienced firsthand the challenges faced by musicians performing together over distance.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

06.05 - Vicious Circles and Deadly Elements

Mimi concert debut

Mimi 1.5 makes her concert debut at the People Inside Electronics concert at the Boston Court Performing Arts Center, Pasadena. See/hear the concert preview with Isaac Schankler at the Yamaha Disklavier. [ press release, poster ]

Thursday, May 27, 2010

05.27 - Jonathan's Graduation

Jonathan Bragg graduates from Harvard University today with a degree in Computer Science. Anna Huang attend the graduation ceremony, and sends this picture from Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

05.11 - ISE 575 Final Projects

Final project presentations for EE 675 / ISE 575, Topics in Engineering Approaches to Music Cognition, take place today.  The topic this year is Musical Prosody and Interpretation.  Here is a link to the list of projects and the photos.

Monday, March 8, 2010

03.08 - Mimi evolving

Mimi continues to evolve as Isaac takes it through its paces in preparation for the June concert debut.

03.08 - DREU awardees @ MuCoaCo

Jiayun Guo of the University of Washington and Katie Wolf of the University of Minnesota are among 70 out of 500 students selected for this summer's CDC/CRA-W Distributed Research Experiences for Undergraduates (DREU). They will be working at the MuCoaCo Lab this summer.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

03.06 - MuSA.RT @ MTSE

Elaine Chew gives a keynote lecture, Tonality Algorithms and Visualization, at the Music Theory Southeast meeting, held at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, South Carolina, this  year.
A large contingent of faculty and students are at the MTSE meeting from Florida State University at Tallahassee, including Clifton Callender and Joseph Kraus pictured below. Adrian Childs of the University of Georgia, a recent collaborator on the organization of MCM 2009 at Yale,  is also pictured below. It was gratifying to see the enthusiasm of the attendees for MuSA.RT, several of whom started cheering for certain tonal centers to win out over others.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

03.04 - Zenph Studios

Elaine Chew visits Zenph Studios while in the Carolinas for the Music Theory Southeast meeting.

John Walker gives a tour of their facilities in Raleigh, NC.

MuSA.RT analyzes tonal structures as projected by Glenn Gould's 1955 performance of Bach's Goldberg Variations and Art Tatum's 1933 recording of Tea for Two (shown below). Anatoly Larkin plays with MuSA.RT and tests its analytical limits.

We also let Mimi have a go at the Art Tatum.
Glenn Gould's 1955 performance of Goldberg Variation 8
Art Tatum's 1933 performance of Tea for Two

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

02.24 - Isaac Schankler works with Mimi

Composer-improviser Isaac Schankler starts working with Mimi, in preparation for Mimi's concert debut at the People Inside Electronics concert this coming June. New changes, such as color coding of pitch classes are introduced.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

01.31 - MCM Reviewed in CMJ

Jonathan Bragg and Anna Huang's review the Mathematics and Computation in Music meeting appears in the Computer Music Journal 34(1): [ html ]

Thursday, January 28, 2010

01.28 - Aniruddh Patel

Aniruddh Patel of the Neurosciences Institute in San Diego visits USC and gives a talk on "Rhythm in Speech and Music."

The talk took place at Doheny Library, and was attended by over 200 people across three schools at USC — the Viterbi School of Engineering, the Thornton School of Music, and the College of Letters, Arts & Sciences — and beyond.