MWF 11:30 am – 12:20 pm / Harbor Walk East 302
A course introducing the creative side of computing in the context of music, sounds, images, and other digital artifacts. Emphasis will be given to computer programming for music making, live performance, and interaction. Students will develop several digital artifacts and elementary musical compositions. Course is open to all majors. No previous programming experience required.
Prerequisites by Topic
- Basic computer experience, including file organization and software installation.
- Interest in developing intelligent-listening and sound-structuring skills.
Additional Course Requirements
- Bring your laptop to class.
- Bring headphones to class.
- Test 1: Friday, Oct 15, 2021
- Test 2: TBA
- Final: 1:00-3:00pm, Wednesday, Dec 8, 2021
- Class attendance and intro survey.
- Video of CSCI 180 final project (Dec. 2010) – a laptop orchestra!
- The Antikythera Mechanism – the first known(!) computer.
- John Cage’s 4’33” – performed by the Berlin Philharmonic (one of the top orchestras in the world, distinguished “for its virtuosity and compelling sound”), and an explanation of it.
- Bloom’s Taxonomy – or how deep is your knowledge? – memorize, understand, apply, analyze, synthesize, and evaluate.
- Seikilos Epitaph – the oldest surviving complete musical composition notation, from anywhere in the world.
- TED Talk: How to read music – sheet music may look complicated, but once you’ve gotten the hang of a few simple elements like notes, bars and clefs, you’re ready to rock. Tim Hansen hits the basics you need to read music.
- Music Theory in 16 Minutes – the essentials of music theory in just 16 minutes! What is an octave? How do you make scales? What are intervals? What’s the difference between major and minor? What is the circle of fifths?! All explained in less time than it takes to make and eat a really nice sandwich!!!
- Evan Grant demonstrates the science and art of cymatics, a process for making soundwaves visible. Useful for analyzing complex sounds, it also makes complex and beautiful designs, and demonstrates how the universe is full of “music” – actually, particles that vibrate in different frequencies, where sound is only a small subset of a much larger (universal) phenomenon.
- Introduction to Pair Programming. This 9-minute video describes what pair programming is, the do’s and don’ts of effective pairing, and the pros and cons of pair programming.
- JythonMusic provides software for music-making and creative computing. It is a collection of Jython libraries for music, images, graphical user interfaces (GUIs), and connecting to external MIDI devices, smartphones, and tablets, among others.
- See download instructions (includes video).
- Audacity is free, open source software for recording and editing sounds. It is available for Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows, GNU/Linux, and other operating systems.
- See intro video (4:14 min).
Course syllabus (PDF). Also, see the following syllabus references:
- Here is the relevant research (read the first two articles, for grade):
- Cindi May, “Students are Better Off without a Laptop in the Classroom“, Scientific American, Jul. 2017.
- Cindi May, “A Learning Secret: Don’t Take Notes with a Laptop“, Scientific American, Jun. 2014.
- Pam A. Mueller and Daniel M. Oppenheimer, “The Pen Is Mightier Than the Keyboard: Advantages of Longhand Over Laptop Note Taking“, Psychological Science, vol. 25(6), pp. 1159-1168, 2014.
- Susan Payne Carter, Kyle Greenberg, Michael Walker, “The Impact of Computer Usage on Academic Performance: Evidence from a Randomized Trial at the United States Military Academy“, SEII Discussion Paper #2016.02, May 2016.
- Susan M. Ravizza, Mitchell G. Uitvlugt, Kimberly M. Fenn, “Logged In and Zoned Out“, Psychological Science, vol. 28(2), pp. 171-180, Dec. 2016.
- Gloria Mark, Shamsi T. Iqbal, Mary Czerwinski, and Paul Johns, “Bored mondays and focused afternoons: the rhythm of attention and online activity in the workplace“, Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI ’14), ACM, New York, NY, USA, pp. 3025–3034, 2014.
- Dennis E. Clayson, Debra A. Haley, “An Introduction to Multitasking and Texting – Prevalence and Impact on Grades and GPA“, Journal of Marketing Education, vol. 35(1), pp. 26-40, Dec. 2012.
- James M. Kraushaar and David Novak, “Examining the Effects of Student Multitasking with Laptops during the Lecture“, Journal of Information Systems Education, Vol. 21(2), pp. 241-251, Jul. 2010.
- Tracii Ryan, Andrea Chester, John Reece, and Sophia Xenos, “The uses and abuses of Facebook: A review of Facebook addiction“, Journal of Behavioral Addictions, vol. 3(3), pp. 133-148, 2014.
- Faria Sana, TinaWeston, Nicholas J. Cepeda, “Laptop multitasking hinders classroom learning for both users and nearby peers“, Computers & Education, vol. 62, pp. 24-31, Mar. 2013.