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ECE Guest Lecturer

 

Some Thoughts on the How, What and Why of Music Informatics Research

Juan Bello

Wednesday, October 31, 2018
Noon–1 p.m.
1400 Wegmans Hall

Abstract: The framework of music informatics research (MIR) can be thought of as a closed loop of data collection, algorithmic development and benchmarking. Much of what we do is heavily focused on the algorithmic aspects, or how to optimally combine various techniques from e.g., signal processing, data mining, and machine learning, to solve a variety of problems, from auto-tagging to automatic transcription, that captivate the interest of our community. We are very good at this, and in this talk I will describe some of the know-how that we have collectively accumulated over the years. On the other hand, I would argue that we are less proficient at clearly defining the “what” and “why” behind our work, that data collection and benchmarking have received far less attention and are often treated as afterthoughts, and that we sometimes tend to rely on widespread and limiting assumptions about music that affect the validity and usability of our research. On this, there is much that we can learn from music theory and cognition research, particularly with regards to the adoption of methods and practices that fully embrace our prior knowledge about music, and the complexity and variability of human responses to it.

Bio: Juan Pablo Bello is Professor of Music Technology and Computer Science & Engineering at New York University. In 1998 he received a BEng in Electronics from the Universidad Simón Bolívar in Caracas, Venezuela, and in 2003 he earned a doctorate in Electronic Engineering at Queen Mary, University of London. Juan’s expertise is in digital signal processing, machine listening and music information retrieval, topics that he teaches and in which he has published more than 100 papers and articles in books, journals and conference proceedings. He is the director of the Music and Audio Research Lab (MARL), where he leads research on sound and music informatics. His work has been supported by public and private institutions in Venezuela, the UK, and the US, including Frontier and CAREER awards from the National Science Foundation and a Fulbright scholar grant for multidisciplinary studies in France.

 

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