Tag: piano

The Animated Pianist That Plays Like a Person, Just By Listening Along

By Ashley P. Taylor | September 28, 2012 4:08 pm

When we listen to an mp3—or a CD track, a mix tape, a record, even a wax cylinder—we’re conjuring up the sound of a past performance. Now there’s a new computer program that does the reverse, sort of: It takes an audio file and creates a piano-playing cartoon, using sound (or related bits of information) to animate a performance anew.

The fingers of an expert pianist look relaxed as they tickle the ivories, never seeming overexerted or out of place. The computer program is designed to work on the same principle: It “listens to” a midi file and decides how the cartoon should finger each chord in order to put out the least possible effort. In addition to telling the active fingers which keys to press down, it also decides what to do with the idle fingers so that they are optimally relaxed and poised to play their next notes. Looking this at ease is a lot of work.

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CATEGORIZED UNDER: Technology Attacks!

Crazy Futures From the Past: Tank Operated by Phonograph, a Bike for the Whole Family, Etc

By Jennifer Welsh | March 11, 2011 8:31 am

All inventors have their ups and downs.

Thomas Edison wanted to make pianos out of cement and Henry Ford tried to invent a nuclear car. Popular Science recently went through their 138 years of archives to find the insanest inventions on its pages, and now they grace us in gallery form on their website.

For every airplane, computer or chemical weapon appearing in our archives, there are a ton of other inventions that are, to put it bluntly, rather pointless. At best, they’re well-intentioned but a little impractical. Let’s take a look, shall we?

Don’t miss the magic of the combo piano-vacuum, because really, everyone likes a mash-up and the only way to improve a vacuum is to make it stationary. But I guess you could always use it to clean the piano itself.

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CATEGORIZED UNDER: Technology Attacks!
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