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Recent News

March 2013

The book "Music and Human Computer Interaction", edited by members of the Music Computing Lab, and the first book in Springer's new Cultural Computing Series, has now been published. Ask your library to get a copy.

Oliver Hoedl joins the Music Computing Lab from the Human Computer Interaction Group in the Institute for Design and Assessment of Technology at Vienna University of Technology, and promptly carries out outstanding work on the Haptic Bracelets firmware. Oliver has left temporarily to present his Sonic Trombone at Georgia Tech’s Guthman Musical Instrument Competition. Oliver will return to the Music Computing Lab shortly.

On Thursday 21st March, Simon Holland and Oliver Hoedl gave an invited presentation and four hour participative demonstration of the Haptic Bracelets to Professor Alan Wing and researchers and practitioners at the Sensory Motor Neuro-Science Research Lab at Birmingham University.

Vassilis Angelis was an invited participant at the International Workshop on Cross-Disciplinary Perspectives on Musical Rhythm held in Etihad Towers in Abu Dhabi 17th - 21st March 2013. Other participants included Ed Large, Robert Rowe, David Huron, Justin London, Godfreid Toussaint, Steve McAdams, Kofi Agawu, Xavier Serra, Carlos Guedes, Juan Pablo Bello and William Sethares.

Simon Rolph is editing a new video of the Stern Brocot Band.

On Tuesday 26th March in Birmingham, Simon Holland gave an invited presentation and participative demo of the Haptic Bracelets to some fifty members of ACPIN, the professional Association of Chartered Physiotherapists with Interests in Neurology, who have special interests in the neuro-rehabilitation of conditions such as Stroke, Parkinson's Disease, Ataxia, Head injury, etc. While the Haptic Bracelets were primarily designed for musical purposes, in written feedback from ACPIN participants, the general view was that the approach they embody has the potential to influence practice.

The Stern Brocot Band submitted their new heavy punk prog single "Rocket Socks", to the International Un-Twelve Composition Competition for Microtonal Music. Rocket Socks is written in the srutal temperament, which is subtly different to 12-TET. It is generated by slightly wide semitones (105 cents) and a period of 600 cents. The new single features Simon Rolph's reflective punk vocals and artist and photographer Anna Berry's serenely soaring soprano. Critic and artist Peter Holland, listening to a rudimentary early rehearsal of the piece published on YouTube, commented "Boys… You just recorded your first number one hit single"

On Wednesday 27th March in Hereford, Simon Holland gave an invited presentation and co-ran a participatory workshop with Professor Alan Wing for some seventeen physiotherapists from the Wye Valley NHS Trust. The workshop was part of a research day organised by Fiona Price, a Stroke Research Facilitator from the Stroke Research Network, for the NHS Trust. The participatory workshop examined the pros and cons of cueing the gait or arm movements of stroke, parkinson's, head injury, ataxic, and other patients using the Haptic Bracelets as compared with other approaches. All participants were able to try out the Haptic Bracelets. Written feedback from this group of NHS physiotherapists indicated the general view was that this approach has the potential to influence practice in neuro-rehabiliation.

NAD, (in real life Mustafa Ali) a member of the Music Computing Lab with a background and commercial track record in dance music, has gone back to the recording studio, and his first new track, “A Sense of Finitude”, has been recorded for a forthcoming Studio Rockers compilation album. In the meantime, “Pure Imagination (NAD Wonky Refix) can be found on YouTube with an accompanying video produced by Modal. NAD is beginning work begins on a 5-track EP and album planned for release in 2013.

February 2013

The Stern Brocot Band has been joined by Simon Rolph as vocalist. The band is working on a new microtonal piece composed by Andy Milne that incorporates (amongst other things) shifting additive rhythms. A performance will be uploaded to YouTube shortly.

January 2013

Robot assembly of the sub-miniature components of a batch of sixteen Haptic Bracelets is completed.

December 2012

Katie Wilkie completes empirical work on the Magic Music Mat. This work explores a novel approach to collaborative music interaction design that draws Katie's research on Embodied Cognition and Music.
Vassilis Angelis completes a more rigorous and searching version of the classic Handel experiment on tapping to polyrhythms.
Phil Downs videos the use of Song Walker Harmony Space for selected compositional and performance tasks.

November 2012

Tony Steffert demonstrates professional-grade EEG and other biofeedback equipment to the weekly post-graduate research meeting.
Anthony Prechtl joins the Stern Brocot Band on digital modelling guitar.

October 2012

Two new full time PhD students join the Music Computing Lab, Anthony Prechtl and Tony Steffert.

Richard Seaton starts PhD in the Acoustics Research group on "Pitch drift in a cappella choral singing" supervised by Dennis Pim and David Sharp. Dennis Pim chairs the Open University's undergraduate course on the Technology of Music.

August 2012

Carrie Lennard, a music teacher working with special needs children in London visits the Music Computing Lab on 20th August. Carrie followed up by discussing work by Steve Brewer using customised software with the Kinect to solve some of the problems and address some of the opportunities discussed.

Version 2.0 the wireless Haptic Bracelets is completed and debugged. The arduino-based model is superceded - the new design uses an in-house created printed circuit board and miniature surface mounted components. Maxime Canelli, who will be sorely missed, returns home to France after four highly productive months at the Music Computing Lab.

July 2012

Rosa Fox, who recently graduated with a degree in Music Informatics from Sussex University Joined the team working on the Haptic Bracelets to help with OSC programming and UI design for an iPad controller.

Anders Bouwer re-visits the Music Computing Lab for a month (his third or fourth tour of duty) to assist with evaluation of the Haptic Drum Kit and early version prototype Haptic Bracelets.

Simon Holland, Maxime Canelli, Anders Bower and Rosa Fox visited the Sensory Motor Neuroscience Centre (SyMon) at the University of Birmingham on July 24th. Anders Bouwer and Simon Holland gave a talk on the Haptic Bracelets, and the whole team demonstrated an arduino-based wireless prototype of the Haptics Bracelets, as well as an older wired prototype.

June 2012

The Stern Brocot band gave their first public performance of a new Tajikistan-inspired microtonal piece. Thanks to Phil Downs for filming the performance. This piece, composed by Andy Milne, was performed in the atrium of the Jenny Lee Building at the Open University on 12th June. This performance featured visiting researcher Maxime Canelli on 'Line 6' digital guitar. This piece features timbres shaped to the microtonal scale, using digital instrument design by Andy Milne and Anthony Prechtl, which draws on theory described here -Hex. The performance can be found youtube here -Stern Brocot at the OU.

May 2012

Vasillis Angelis has had his paper "Testing a computational model of rhythm perception using polyrhythmic stimuli." accepted for publication by the Journal of New Music Research, subject to minor revisions.

Maxime Canelli, a 4th Year Engineering student from Ecole Centrale de Nantes has joined the Music Computing Lab for the summer to work on the Haptic Bracelets and Rhythm Bracelets Project. This will involve working with Arduinos, IOS, and human perception research.

April 2012

Andrea Franceschini has begun a PhD in the Music Computing Lab on Music Education.

Anders Bouwer has agreed to return to the Music Computing Lab in July 2012 to work on evaluating the Haptic Bracelets.

March 2012

Adam Linson presented a paper "Improvisation without representation: artificial intelligence and music."co-written with Chris Dobbyn and Robin Laney at the Workshop Music, Mind, and Invention: Creativity at the Intersection of Music and Computation, 30-31 March, 2012, Ewing, New Jersey, USA.Available from Oro.Vasillis Angelis transferred his PhD registration within the Open University from The Music Department to the Computing Department, which is part of the Centre for research in Computing. He remains a core member of the Music Computing Lab.

February 2012

"A MIDI sequencer that widens access to the compositional possibilities of novel tunings" by Prechtl, Milne, Holland, Laney, Sharp, has been published byComputer Music Journal!November 2012
Simon Holland, Katie Wilkie Paul Mulholland and Allan Seago have signed a contract with Springer Verlag to edit a book on Music Interaction in Springer's new Computing and Culture Series. The book demonstrates how new developments in Music Interaction demand approaches beyond HCI concepts such as usability, interaction design, and user experience.

October 2011

The Mobile HCI 2011Award for Most Influential Paper from Mobile HCI 2001 was awarded in Stockholm to Simon Holland and David Morse for their 2001 paper AudioGPS: Spatial Audio Navigation with a Minimal Attention Interface./i This paper has been cited 133 times.

A recent PhD thesis by Roland Adeny from the University of Queensland in the Creative Industries Faculty cites research from the Music Computing Lab some 38 times.

September 2011

"A MIDI sequencer that widens access to the compositional possibilities of novel tunings" by Prechtl, Milne, Holland, Laney, Sharp, has just been accepted by iComputer Music Journal/i. It will appear in Vol. 16, No. 1 (Spring 2012).

August 2011

Anna Xambó and Adam Linson presented papers atICMCin Huddersfield.

July 2011

Anna Xambó, Katie Wilkie, and Rose Johnson presented papers at the workshop on Music Interaction at BCS HCI in Newcastle.

Katie Wilkie, Simon Holland, Rose Johnson, and Grégory Leplâtre organised and ran an InternationalWorkshop in Music Interactionat BCS HCI on 4th July in Newcastle. Seventeen papers were presented, four from the US, two from Australia, with authors of other papers coming from the Netherlands, Spain and the UK.

Craig Hughes, an OU Masters student, had a paper presented at the 8th International Sound and Music Computing Conference in Padua. The paper was co-authored with supervisors Michel Wermelinger and Simon Holland. The latter presented.

June 2011

Andrew Milne presented a paper atMCM in Paris.

Andrew Milne had his paper "Modelling the similarity of pitch collections with expectation tensors" (co-authored with William Sethares, Robin Laney, David Sharp) published in Journal of Mathematics and Music 5/i(1).

The Music Computing Lab devised and hosted a technology workshop for older people on June 17th 2011, on behalf of the pan-European Opt-In project and with the collaboration of Age UK and the Verwey Jonker Institute Utrecht . Amongst other activities, Some twelve older people spent over an hour playing songs and improvising music using Song Walker Harmony Space.

May 2011

Andrew Milne and Anna Xambó presented a poster atNIMEin Oslo, Norway.

Simon Holland was interviewed and quoted by New Scientist and the Daily Mail in articles on research about 'Hand Hacking' carried out by by the University of Tokyo/Sony Japan, whose work cited his own work on the Haptic Drum Kit.MusicJacket appears on Bang goes the Theory
The MusicJacket research team were invited to take part in the BBC's popular science production, Bang goes the Theory. The episode was shown on national TV on 2nd May, 2011.

April 2011

Tom Collins had his paper "Modeling pattern importance in Chopin's mazurkas" (co-authored with Robin Laney, Alastair Wills, Paul Garthwaite) printed in Music Perception 28/i(4).

March 2011

iModelling the similarity of pitch collections with expectation tensors/i, by Andrew Milne, William Sethares, Robin Laney, and David Sharp, is now "in press"—it has been formally accepted—and will appear in the next issue (5:1) ofJournal of Mathematics and Music.

February 2011

Katie Wilkie, Rose Johnson, Grégory Leplâtre and Simon Holland have had their proposal accepted for aMusic Interaction Workshopat BCS HCI 2011.

Research by Katie Wilkie, Simon Holland and Paul Mulholland was published in the recent HCI special issue of Computer Music Journal. Their research wasfeatured on the rear coverand received a mention in the editor's podcast.

December 2010

Anna Xambó presented a poster, and Adam Linson and Andrew Milne gave talks at theDMRN+5 workshop at Queen Mary University.

November 2010

Andrew Milne, William Sethares, Robin Laney, and David Sharp, had a paper (Modelling the similarity of pitch collections with expectation tensors/i) accepted, subject to revisions, byJournal of Mathematics and Music.

Related Conferences and Workshops organised by the OU