“Musical Pattern Versus Musical Meaning: What’s the Difference” presented by Hofstadter


Presentation Title:

  • Musical Pattern Versus Musical Meaning: What’s the Difference




  • Computers guided by complex programs can put letters and words, lines and colors together in never-before-seen ways. What results are pieces of text and pictures that can be seen and experienced by humans in much the same way as are human-produced writings and drawings. What about when computers put together sequences of sounds in never-before-heard ways? What kind of meanings do such complex patterns have? The key issue is that musical meaning seems to derive largely from the emotionallity of the person who first conceived the pattern of notes. When there is a program behind the scenes, and when the patterns sound like those dreamt up by a human being, what meaning does one attribute to such a piece?