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A decade from now, music will be custom tailored for each listener

By Shawn Knight · 14 replies
Jun 13, 2019
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  1. During a recent speaking engagement at Creative Destruction Lab’s second annual Super Session event, Khosla Ventures CEO Vinod Khosla said that in 10 years from now, he doesn’t think we will be listening to music (at least, not in the traditional sense). Instead, the venture capitalist believes we’ll all be soaking in custom songs designed individually for the listener, tailored to particular needs or preferences.

    As weird as that sounds, Khosla may not be far off base.

    Plenty of time and effort has already gone into using AI and other methods to alter music and as Stuart Dredge highlighted earlier this year on Medium, listening habits are changing.

    Consumers are increasingly opting for playlists based on their mood or activity rather than seeking out a specific song or band. Should that trend continue, it’s not inconceivable to think that music as we know it could evolve to better meet our needs.

    Image credit: 3d illustration of human with headphones by whiteMocca

    Permalink to story.

  2. Gixser

    Gixser TS Rookie

    Sounds like a terrible idea from an artistic and cultural perspective. I guess the artists are now getting replaced by AI.
  3. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,913   +3,364

    Having machines tailor songs to the user is completely opposite to the point of music, which is imparting an experience, creativity, or sending a message. By giving users what they think they want, you rob them of the chance to discover. Can you imagine a life lived where your first preferences were your only preferences? Machines constantly feed you what they know you like, never giving you a chance to grow, to experience, to live.

    Not that modern pop music is really providing any of the 3 points I provided above. The pop music bubble may pop due to the studio's own bastardization of the industry but there will always be a place for quality music.
    sauri, HofyPC, NimbusTLD and 5 others like this.
  4. QuantumPhysics

    QuantumPhysics TS Evangelist Posts: 1,180   +857

    No AI could ever tailor cut a playlist for me that I'd like.
    imdarkbreeze, mcborge and m4a4 like this.
  5. Kinemon

    Kinemon TS Rookie

    Ai is going to replace musicians making music, actors and directors making movies, and between AI and robotics pretty much every job that humans do will disappear within the next 10-20 years. Why spend huge budgets and years making a movie when an advanced AI could spit one out in a second for free. Look at marvel movies, they are 90% cgi already.
  6. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 5,296   +3,705

    The simplest problem with their idea is that it leaves NO openings for anything radically different. If you listen to the same old stuff day in and day out you miss the opportunity to discover something you never have before. Talk about limiting your horizons!
    Cubi Dorf likes this.
  7. m4a4

    m4a4 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,430   +997

    Yeah, ok. My tastes aren't shallow enough to guess at so easily. I like melody over all else (which can span across any genre). And is very subjective.

    You might be able to find songs I don't mind listening to, but good luck finding song that I like/love listening to...
  8. mcborge

    mcborge TS Guru Posts: 568   +463

    Music instills emotions, emotions can be manipulated, aaah! Skynet is getting at us via our music. Seriously though all this makes me wonder if it could be used in some subliminal way to soften us up for ads. For instance you could start hearing holiday related songs for a few hours before being served with an ad for a holiday resort or playing songs featuring the word "Hungry" before serving you an ad for takeout.
  9. seeprime

    seeprime TS Guru Posts: 378   +405

    Music sorted reddit style. No thanks.
  10. XtremeHammond

    XtremeHammond TS Enthusiast Posts: 60   +42

    The only thing that makes music alive is a human being behind it.
    Although, there are a lot of tools to help creators, it's obviously felt when the results sound forced and insincere. I don't think it will differ with AI and neural networks.

    But, I'm absolutely sure that a decade from now, there will be more custom tailors with own micro-communities supporting them.
  11. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 14,824   +3,912

    We're getting fed a steady diet of that now. I think I hear strings at all the poignant parts of a TV show, and have heard them for decades. A devastating loss usually requires several cellos.Try taking the sound track out of a movie, and you're pretty much left with day to day life. As a matter of fact, when movies were silent, they had an organist supply "mood music" to try and match the screen action.

    Madison Avenue has had what you're suggesting down for decades. They anticipate a persons "needs". How many commercials do you see for "feminine hygiene products" during the Superbowl? wings, pizza, and beer, that's what they roadblock the game with for the most part. And really, don't the Christmas carols start earlier every year. "Jesus is coming, the more you spend and give, the closer your place in heaven will be all paid up by the time you get there"... :rolleyes:

    The overarching irony is, all this nonsense was predicted by prog rockers decades ago. Don't believe me? Then listen to Rush, "2112", and Emerson. Lake, and Palmer, with "Brain Salad Surgery".

    Rush's "2112" was released on April Fool's Day, 1976:

    For those not into metal, the "Overture" ends at 4:20

    While ELP's "Brain Salad Surgery" was released November 1973

    Of the albums 10 tracks, the following are the ones of most concern to this issue:

    On this last track, you'll have to indulge, or at least bear with, Mr. Emerson. He does get carried away with his classical / jazz / prog rock organ / synth solos
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2019
  12. mcborge

    mcborge TS Guru Posts: 568   +463

    Prog rock was a bit before my time to be honest but I get your point.
  13. gcarter

    gcarter TS Enthusiast Posts: 100   +35

  14. HofyPC

    HofyPC TS Rookie

    For those who do not want to listen to the great album (Rush 2112) read the book. Ayn Rand - Anthem
    mcborge likes this.
  15. Markoni35

    Markoni35 TS Booster Posts: 149   +70

    A decade from now we'll be custom tailoring the music for our AI masters!

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