Music That's Made for You - NBC 7 San Diego

Music That's Made for You

"Black Box" technology helps listener search for music

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    Music That's Made for You
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    Finding a song to fit your taste or mood could get easier with new "black box" technology. A UC San Diego research team is developing a program could change the way people listen to music.

    Have you ever been in the mood for a certain kind of music with a certain kind of sound or rhythm but can't really think of an artist or the name of a tune to find it? The answer could be in the "Black Box" .

    It's a computer developed by a University of California San Diego student/professor combo that can create music playlists based on music genres, types of instruments used and even the feelings conveyed by songs according to the Voice of San Diego.

    "You don't need the artist name; you don't need the song name, all you need to say is 'I want some scary Halloween music'" says Professor Gert Lanckriet at UCSD's Jacobs School of Engineering.

    For years, computer-based song aggregators like Pandora or Last.fm have allowed people to compile playlists based on song names or artists, but the "black box" as this team calls it, can listen to a song and decide whether it is romantic or a song you can dance to or even figure out what instruments are being played.

    The cool thing about this new technology is that it exposes people to artists they probably wouldn't have heard of otherwise and also gives relatively unknown artists exposure according to the Voice of San Diego.

    It's still in demo form but they're hoping to launch it after finding the right partners and developing the program further.

    The scientists are soliciting feedback and have launched the game, called Herd It, on Facebook.