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Computational Thinking in SoundTeaching the Art and Science of Music and Technology$
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Gena R. Greher and Jesse M. Heines

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199826179

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780199826179.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 24 October 2021

Platforms and Tools

Platforms and Tools

Anything You Can Do,I Need to Do Cheaper

(p.95) Chapter 6 Platforms and Tools
Computational Thinking in Sound

Gena R. Greher

Jesse M. Heines

Oxford University Press

On their page intended to woo prospective graduate students, the Georgia Tech School of Music website says: … Successful design and development of music technology systems must be supported by knowledge of music theory, perception, composition, and performance, as well as digital media, computing, electrical and mechanical engineering, and design… . We don’t disagree, but that’s an awful lot to know! What’s more, requiring students to have even a subset of these skills before they can “get in the game” deprives a huge percentage of them the opportunity to learn valuable computing skills through the engaging power of music. There is no end to the money you can spend on technology to gain the ability to design and create. For certain types of projects, professional or “prosumer” software applications boasting the latest bells and whistles might in fact make total economic sense in terms of functionality and time. However, we don’t feel that it’s necessary to jump into the higher end of the market at the beginning stages of learning computational skills. In addition, such costs are prohibitive for most undergraduates and even graduate students. Of course, you could outfit a computer lab available to students with this level of software, but then they would have to do all their assignments in the lab. This is not a practical solution for our students because so many of them are commuters or work off campus and are unable to spend significant time in our labs outside of class time. We think it’s important that students can run the same software on their own systems that is demonstrated in class and with which they are expected to do their assignments. We therefore suggest that you adopt software platforms that you can download freely from the web, but that still allow you to explore broad computing and music concepts common to the higher end platforms. We don’t contend that such software is as sophisticated or as polished as its professional or “prosumer” cousins, but it is most likely fully sufficient for your teaching purposes.

Keywords:   GarageBand, Logo programming language, Mindstorms (Papert), Rich Text Format, Squeak, SuperCollider program, TextEdit, Windows systems, global entities, hard-coded values, jMusic, reciprocal learning, sprites, turbo speed

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