Kurt Werner and Mayank Sanganeria: BitBending - circuit bending brought to software

Wed, 01/16/2013 - 5:15pm - 7:00pm
CCRMA Classroom, The Knoll 2nd floor, Rm 217
Event Type: 
 We present a justification for computer modeling of circuit bent instruments, with deference to the movement's aversion to "theory-true" design and associations with chance discovery. We introduce the technique of "bit bending," a particularly fertile type of "bend" dealing with short-circuits and manipulations upon digital serial information. We also present a C++ library for the modeling of certain classes of digital integrated circuits, as well as a synthesis architecture (frequency modulation with numerically-controlled oscillators) which utilizes the library in a Steinberg VST plugin framework. Circuit bending, the process of creatively modifying or augmenting sound-producing electronic devices, occupies an increasingly important musical and cultural niche. Though the practice began in the 1960s (and traces roots to Leon Theremin's experiments with radio tubes in the 1920s), it is still understudied. 

Kurt James Werner
is a composer of electro-acoustic / acousmatic (etc.) music, author of digital signal processing code and compositional algorithms (see Grani+, boots&cats&&&, etc.), avid circuit-bender, and Ph.D. candidate in Computer-Based Music Theory and Acoustics at Stanford University's Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics. His music references elements of algorithmic / generative composition, breakbeat, chiptunes, musique concrète, circuit-bending, and (granular and otherwise) synthesis, in juxtaposition and superimposition. He holds a Bachelor of Science in General Engineering (with a secondary field in Acoustics) and a Bachelor of Music in Composition/Theory from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Mayank Sanganeria is a Masters student at CCRMA, Stanford working on computer music and digital signal processing code. His previous projects have explored granular synthesis, unique HCI for creating music as well as visual art from sound inputs, automated improvisation, pieces for laptop ensembles and interactions for live diffusion of sound in 8 channels. In 2011, he has received a Bachelors and Masters degree in Engineering Physics from IIT Bombay.
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