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A Sonic Evolution of Life on Earth - Part 1

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Uploaded on Oct 21, 2007

This is an excerpt from my graduate thesis project, "A Sonic Evolution of Life on Earth." It was created in real-time using self governing pure-data software designed to emulate evolutionary processes. No user input was required during the performance.

Visuals courtesy of MilkDrop Winamp Visualization Software

[Program Note]

Imagine compressing the 4 billion year history of life on earth into a single week. Now imagine that during this week you could "hear" the evolution of life on earth as represented in sound. How would these sounds develop, interact, and compete with in this sound world? What would speciation, adaptation, and extinction sound like? How would the rise of mankind, which occurs in the last seconds of the week, inform our perspective and understanding of our role in the elaborate process that is life on earth?

To answers these questions I have programmed a software environment that chronicles the history of life on earth as a week long, surround sound experience. Every sound you hear is manufactured in real time by algorithmic systems that emulate evolutionary processes. As a result, simple blips and clicks evolve over time into more complex sounds and textures. These resulting lineages of sound are in constant competition for available resources, which determines the chances of a sound's survival. Furthermore, sounds that deplete their available resources too quickly face extinction. The overall form of the piece reflects changing conditions on earth.

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