Innovation of the Week

How Google is using AI to create completely new musical sounds

NSynth uses neural networks to combine different kinds of instruments like, say, classical music's clavichord and the Hammond organ of rhythm and blues

Rainbowgrams of audio produced with NSynth.

Google is using artificial intelligence to create musical sounds that human ears have never heard before, said Cade Metz at Wired​. NSynth uses neural networks to combine different kinds of instruments like, say, classical music's clavichord and the Hammond organ of rhythm and blues. NSynth doesn't layer the sounds on top of each other, but uses the mathematical characteristics of the notes generated by each instrument to produce entirely new sounds. And it "can do this with about a thousand different instruments — from violins to balafons."

Google Magenta

NSynth is the work of Google Magenta, a small team of researchers within the tech giant who are teaching computers how to make art on their own and are creating a wider range of tools for human artists in the process. "Artistically, it could yield some cool stuff," said music critic Marc Weidenbaum. "And because it's Google, people will follow their lead."

Recommended

The case against surveillance advertising
Too much tech.
Picture of Ryan CooperRyan Cooper

The case against surveillance advertising

Microsoft's Activision Blizzard bailout
Bobby Kotick.
Picture of Ryan CooperRyan Cooper

Microsoft's Activision Blizzard bailout

Every U.S. Netflix plan just got more expensive
Netflix logo.
still watching?

Every U.S. Netflix plan just got more expensive

Thieves raid rail cars for packages, L.A. news crew reports
Train tracks in Los Angeles
Train Heist

Thieves raid rail cars for packages, L.A. news crew reports

Most Popular

Florida advances ban on making white people feel 'discomfort' over past racism
Ron DeSantis
Fragility

Florida advances ban on making white people feel 'discomfort' over past racism

California deputy DA opposed to vaccine mandates dies of COVID-19
Kelly Ernby.
covid-19

California deputy DA opposed to vaccine mandates dies of COVID-19

Team USA is fully vaccinated ahead of Olympics
Beijing Olympics.
a positive note

Team USA is fully vaccinated ahead of Olympics