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CMC2a Tasks

Algorithmic Composition with SuperCollider - No GUI 2

Task 6 Name: Generative Composition Using SC 1 - Generative Composition Using SC 2 Set: w6i Due: w13i Weighting: assessable (15%) Courses: cmc2a
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Task Summary All CMC2a tasks VLE

Some techniques involving Algorithms and Generative Composition.

Algorithmic Presentation (pdf)

Other resources

- Search for 'Algorithm MaxMSP SuperCollider' in:
Google, Scholar, Books, Image, Video,
University Library

To Cover

By definition, anything you do using a computer is algorithmic, therefore every computer controlled piece, however, intuitive it may feel, is ultimately, at one level, algorithmic. Of course we, as people, don't really operative on that level, and most 'simple' arrangements and recordings are as intuitive as any analogue recording or, arguably, performance. (There's a whole area of discussion concerning the difference between live performance and recorded playback.)

The Files

3.6.x format (.scd):

Other Examples
  • SC Algorithmic Material 03 - 100 FM Synths [15KB]
  • SC Algorithmic Material 04 - Dionysius (Student Examples)

    The Task

    Algorithms Without Using a GUI

    • Using at least the first FIVE sections from the examples provided, develop a short algorithmic composition. You may develop the previous SC Algorithmic task, or attempt something new.

    • Alternatively, using the sc_to_logic.scd file, control sounds in Logic with these algorithms in SC.

    • You will receive particular credit for utilising your own functions, patterns and schedules, but you do not have to use all of these features.

    • The composition should last about one minute.

    • Credit will be given for technical expertise and imagination in implementation.

    • You should fully document your code, providing sufficiently full comments to ensure that any reasonably informed person could understand the result.

    • Make a demo recording of your patch working. Please keep the size down to a minimum (maximum duration approximately 1 minute). You can use the following code to record your effort:
    // recording (to the SC directory)...
    // use your own path below if you want.
    s.recSampleFormat = "int16";
    s.recChannels = 1; // number of channels
    // use the particular path above...
    • Added value
      By completing the details of the task you will achieve at least a pass mark. By imaginatively and creatively considering how you might implement the task originally you can add value to your submission, and this added value may increase your mark significantly. Even when making videos of short demonstration tasks try to consider musical and performance criteria.


    • Compress (zip) your patches, demos, etc. into one file called your_student_number_"SCAlgNoGUI2" (e.g. 0504335_SCAlgNoGUI2.zip), include a readme with your name and student number and, if necessary, how to use or just open the patch.
    • Submit a copy of the files to the i-Centre on 2pm Tuesday December 19th 2017.

    You might also be interested in:

    The Projects

    The projects and tasks are designed to help you through the various courses and materials that you'll have to deal with, and also to provide an active and practical element to what could otherwise become a rather dry and technical exercise. Tasks are small exercises - you may be asked to complete one or two per week. Projects are larger and carry a higher percentage of the mark. We will undertake two, three, four or more projects and tasks. The final project is usually an individual choice project, and will be worth significantly more than the others in terms of percentages in your portfolio. We will usually try to set aside a time to perform the projects in a public setting.