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Brain Composer: 'thinking' Melodies Onto a Musical Score

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A new application allows music to be composed via thought.

Graz University of Technology researchers have developed a brain-computer interface application that allows music to be composed by thought.


Researchers at the Graz University of Technology (TU Graz) in Austria have developed P300, a brain-computer interface (BCI) application that enables music to be composed by thought.

The team used an established BCI method for writing, by which music can be composed and transferred onto a music score.

The system requires a cap that measures brain waves, the adapted BCI, software for composing music, and some musical knowledge. The system has various options, such as letters or notes, pauses, and chords, which flash one by one in a table.

The user focuses on the desired option while it illuminates, causing a small change in brain waves. The BCI recognizes this change and draws conclusions about the chosen option.

The researchers tested the P300 with volunteers possessing basic musical and compositional knowledge.

"After a short training session, all of them could start composing and seeing their melodies on the score and then play them," says TU Graz's Gernot Muller-Putz.

From Graz University of Technology (Austria)
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