Split levels: Symbolic to sub-symbolic interactive music systems

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The first wave of interactive music systems relied almost exclusively on the Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) standard, a symbolic representation of music modeled closely on the behavior of a piano keyboard, as well as traditional concepts of music notation. The second wave takes as its input raw audio signals, a sub-symbolic data representation that is far more flexible while being far less structured. This article will consider the issues involved with building a pathway back up from sub-symbolic systems to the symbolic approaches of the first wave, and the relative advantages of the two.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)31-42
Number of pages12
JournalContemporary Music Review
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2009


  • Audio analysis
  • Interactive music system
  • Symbolic and sub-symbolic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Music


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