Mathematics Of The Sense, Mathematics, Music And Math Essay

1262 Words Apr 3rd, 2016 null Page
English mathematician James Sylvester once said, “May not music be described as the mathematics of the sense, mathematics, the music of reason?” Music and math may seem two completely unrelated topics, but the truth is, they have always gone together. For a composer, choosing careful rhythms for each measure in any time signature requires addition, and building a working chord requires precise knowledge of intervallic structures and formulas. Any musician can attest that writing and reading music both involve an abundance of numbers. Throughout history, several composers have experimented with the concept of math and music as dependents rather than merely partners. This concept, coined algorithmic composition, refers to the use of mathematical ratios to create music. It was first used in the eleventh century as a method to set text to music; since then, other similar ventures have been recorded in most every part of musical history. There has been evidence that even Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart explored algorithms in music. (Edwards 60) In the time since the earliest project, algorithmic composition has evolved considerably. The most notable modification occurred with the invention of the digital computer. Computer aided algorithmic composition, henceforth referred to as CAAC, was born through development of innovative computer software. Computer programs that aid in composition are designed with a special knowledge of music theory. Some systems are built to produce music…

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