Earthly Mission

Listen to the First Ever Computer Generated Music from 1951

Researchers in New Zealand have restored the world’s first recording of computer-generated music, created in 1951 by the computer scientist famous for breaking the Enigma code. Alan Turing recorded the first ever algorithmic composition in Manchester, England, using the gigantic contraption pictured above (for more details, see below). As you will notice, the journey – which paved the way for everything from synthesisers to the modern electronic music scene – started with a rather conservative tune, so to say…

The computer Turing was using was called the Mark II, a variation of the model the Allied forces used to crack German cyphers during WWII. It was connected to a loud speaker, and programmed to make tonally accurate sounds. Besides God Save the Queen, the other hits on the initial computer-generated playlist were Baa, Baa, Black Sheep and In the Mood (a swing song by Glenn Miller that’s probably about sex).

Unfortunately, time took its toll on the original BBC recordings. New Zealand researchers Copeland and Long found that the frequencies didn’t reflect the original audio. Luckily, by adjusting speeds and filtering noise they were able to bring back, to the future, the first songs ever made using a computer.

via SnapmunkThe Guardian

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