The Shape of Song
July 15, 2004 5:40 AM   Subscribe

Very nice, but [Java] warning please, next time.
posted by Gyan at 6:39 AM on July 15, 2004

v. cool!
posted by mookieproof at 6:58 AM on July 15, 2004

Interesting, but the more I look at it, the more confused I get. Shouldn't the visual representations reflect the complexity of the song? Why does Cole Porter's uncharacteristically simple (and country!) song "Don't Fence Me In" then look so visually baroque?

One bit of (unintentional?) humor: click on John Cage's most famous composition, 4' 33" (rendered on this site as "422"), and nothing happens.
posted by kozad at 7:05 AM on July 15, 2004

Compare ZZTop's "Legs" to "Battle Hymn of the Republic". Whoa!
posted by grateful at 7:18 AM on July 15, 2004

That's nice, thanks!
posted by carter at 7:35 AM on July 15, 2004

Great link! Mozart and Beethoven and other classical composers have complex repeating structures which this tool shows nicely. Some popular music such as by the Beatles also shows quite complex repeats. A music professor of mine in college used to like to compare these structural aspects of composition between the Beatles and classical composers. This tool is a great visualization for that.
posted by caddis at 7:48 AM on July 15, 2004

The guy who built this is working at IBM research these days. He's working on a larger project, called ReMail, to use arc-diagrams to help people visualize email threads and other work tasks and processes.
posted by zpousman at 12:12 PM on July 15, 2004

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