Video Fridays: When Is Machine Music Real?

So yesterday I got an email from my girlfriend, Tricia, who was so amazed by this video of this music making machine that appeared to make some really complicated music via shooting balls at the various rhythm instruments. The writer of the original message ends the message with, “Of the all the balls you will see, NOT ONE hits the floor!!”

So, being the kill-joy that I am, when she pulled up the video I said, oh yeah, I’ve seen that before, way back in the Tech-TV days. And then went on to explain that the whole video is computer generated. [fail trombone]. She was so disappointed that she couldn’t be bothered to finish watching the whole three-minute 26-second video. In her mind, finding out that it was all CGI meant that it was all fake. I tried to explain that the original creators didn’t just create a pretty bouncing ball virtual machine and then just dropped in the soundtrack, but designed the virtual machine to “play” the notes, so they had to program the timing to literally play the tune one hears on the video. She wasn’t having any of it. The fun was destroyed.

So I went on Snopes.com to confirm that the video was in fact CGI and alas I was correct, all CGI. The detail of the hoax was amazing (seriously, this was all built using re-purposed John Deere farming gear?!). One cool thing, I did find that Intel had actually built a machine inspired by the CGI machine in the Pipe-Dream video. So, when I was watching the video of the Intel machine, I couldn’t help but wonder if the soundtrack on the video was being created by the machine or a remixed thing overlaid onto the video. What do you think, real music or pre-recorded fakery???

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