Music 256a + CS 476a | Fall 2023
Music, Computing, Design: The Art of Design
Stanford University
Ge Wang and Andrew Zhu Aday (TA)

syllabus | assignments | final projects | gallery | class FAQ

class: MW 3:30-5:20pm
location: CCRMA Classroom (the Knoll)
prerequisite: prior programming experience
(this course is a soft pre-requisite for: Music 356 / CS 470: Music and AI

Wang, G. Artful Design: Technology in Search of the Sublime
Stanford University Press, 2018. (ISBN: 978-1503600522)
(available at Stanford Bookstore, who will honor price-match at register with Amazon or Barnes and Noble)

course description
This course explores the artful design of interactive musical software, tools, instruments, toys, and games. Topics include strategies for crafting interactive systems, audiovisual design, game design, and the aesthetic dimension of shaping technology in our world today. Course work features several programming assignments, short weekly reading responses, an emphasis on critical design feedback, and a "design your own" final project. You will learn to create systems using a combination of audiovisual programming tools including ChuGL (all new) and Chunity and some Unreal Engine. Prerequisite: experience in C/C++, Java, Unity, or Unreal Engine.

256a topics include:

  • real-time software system design for music (integrating audio, graphics, interaction)
  • principles and patterns for artful design
  • game and toy design for music
  • technology-mediated social design
  • audio-visual interactive programming tools
  • a practical philosophy of shaping technology
(see final projects from: 2022, 2021, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2011, 2010 and 2009)