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English definition

This term covers a broad range of music created through the use of one or more computers. The computer may work as (assistant) composer. In this case one speaks of algorithmic composition. Alternatively the computer can be used as an instrument; that is, the computer is the place where the sounds are to be generated. Here one speaks of sound synthesis. The computer is sometimes brought on stage to create and manipulate sounds made during performance. Finally, the computer may analyse incoming performance information and "reply" in what is known as interactive composition. The former two possibilities sometimes necessitate a good deal of compilation time; the latter two belong to the category of real-time. More recently, music making has witnessed the extensive use of networked computers.

Monday 3 January 2005, by Rob Weale