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Illiac Suite; Streichquartett Nr. 4 (Hiller, Lejaren; Isaacson, Leonard), 1957

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a monochord—working instead with awkward sound generators originally developed for the purpose of transmission measurement. These new technical possibilities were meant to enable ‹composing› the individual sound as well as the musical form of a composition, including its spectral details.[31] Serialism, which dominated Europe's musical avantgarde at the time and in which all of the parameters of a composition are organized according to a central principle of construction, required precise planning. This meant that it was contrary to Schaeffer's approach, which rested on intuition and the reverse method of composition from the material to the structure.

Score synthesis

In 1956 Lejaren Hiller and Leonard Isaacson conducted the first experiment involving the reproduction of human decision-making processes with regard to music on the computer: they had the mainframe ILLIAC 1 synthesize a four-movement score for string quartet, the «Illiac Suite.» The first three movements were based on formalizations of conventional rules of


composition (simple polyphony, counterpoint, serial techniques); the fourth movement, however, was based on the mathematic principle of so-called «Markov chains.» Composers such as Iannis Xenakis later frequently took up the use of these ‹non-musical› means by implementing mathematic disciplines such as game or chaos theory for score synthesis.

Today's advanced music programs such as Max/MPS and SuperCollider integrate sound and score synthesis in a single system. As claimed by Stockhausen's electronic music, timbre and compositional form can be processed with the same instruments and thus more easily according to the same principles. At the same time, the idea of the computer has changed fundamentally since then. While Hiller started out from the image of the unbroken formalization of human behavioral knowledge, which was typical for the early stage of research on artificial intelligence,[32] computers were now not meant to replace human beings, but rather confront them as interactive partners. The notion of the machine transformed from a human surrogate to a cooperative counterpart, which was impressive less due to its perfection than its

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