Music Information Retrieval (MIR)
Steve Tjoa, PhD
Jeff Scott, Gracenote
Description: How would you "Google for audio", provide music recommendations based your
MP3 files, or have a computer "listen" and understand what you are playing?
This workshop will teach the underlying ideas, approaches, technologies, and practical design of intelligent audio systems using Music Information Retrieval (MIR) algorithms.
MIR is a highly-interdisciplinary field bridging the domains of digital audio signal processing, pattern recognition, software system design, and machine learning. Simply put, MIR algorithms allow a computer to "listen" and "understand or make sense of" audio data, such as MP3s in a personal music collection, live streaming audio, or gigabytes of sound effects, in an effort to reduce the semantic gap between high-level musical information and low-level audio data. In the same way that listeners can recognize the characteristics of sound and music - tempo, key, chord progressions, genre, or song structure - MIR algorithms are capable of recognizing and extracting this information, enabling systems to perform extensive sorting, searching, music recommendation, metadata generation, transcription, and even aiding/generating real-time performance.
This workshop is intended for: students, researchers, and industry audio engineers who are unfamiliar with the field of Music Information Retrieval (MIR). We will demonstrate the myriad of exciting technologies enabled by the fusion of basic signal processing techniques with machine learning and pattern recognition. Lectures will cover topics such as low-level feature extraction, generation of higher-level features such as chord estimations, audio similarity clustering, search, and retrieval techniques, and design and evaluation of machine classification systems. The presentations will be applied, multimedia-rich, overview of the building blocks of modern MIR systems. Our goal is to make the understanding and application of highly-interdisciplinary technologies and complex algorithms approachable.
Knowledge of basic digital audio principles is required. Experience with a scripting language such as python or matlab is desired. Students are highly encouraged to bring their own audio source material for course labs and demonstrations.
Workshop structure: The workshop will consist of half-day lectures, half-day supervised lab sessions, demonstrations, and discussions. Labs will allow students to design basic ground-up "intelligent audio systems", leveraging existing MIR toolboxes, programming environments, and applications. Labs will include creation and evaluation of basic instrument recognition, transcription, and real-time audio analysis systems.