Google's Beat Blender Is A Browser-Based AI Drum Machine

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Tech giant Google has harnessed the power of machine learning to make dynamic beats easy to access for those who may be musically challenged in that area with an in-browser tool called Beat Blender. The tool is made in a Java version of the open-source TensorFlow framework, crafted by two engineers from Google's Creative Labs team and the team behind the Magenta AI framework. Beat Blender is a rather unique sort of beat generation tool that creates drum beats based on a sort of graph. Users control it two ways; by modifying the corners of the square that controls the drum beat, or by dragging a point around to change the beat live. Users can also draw a line to make the drum beat move along that line.

The system works by synthesizing new beats from a number of presets. Each corner can be set to a preset beat, and moving the dot between them incorporates various degrees of each different beat. Using machine learning, it analyzes and blends the beats against a background of the flexible, music-focused Magenta framework to produce coherent beats. These dynamic beats can be edited to a great degree in real time, allowing users to essentially craft a completely customized set of beats, and flow between them. Essentially, through the magic of AI, anybody with a smartphone or PC has an easy to use and well-equipped drum machine in their browser.

Google has been hard at work finding creative new uses for Magenta and putting its Creative Lab team to work. Creativity and thinking out of the box is a general area of cognition that AI typically struggle with, and Google's efforts to change that in order to advance AI toward a human level of thought and intelligence have already borne tangible fruit. One example of this is Google-owned Deepmind and its AlphaGO AI, which set a precedent when it bested Go champion Lee Sedol. Presumably, Alphabet and the companies and teams under its umbrella will continue to subjugate areas of human thought and bring them into the purview of AI, one thought convention or cognitive area at a time.

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