This week at SFI: "#Complexity and the Structure of #Music: Universal Features and Evolutionary Perspectives Across Cultures", an #interdisciplinary working group assembled to explore new frameworks for understanding music. Stay tuned for highlights!…
"Every pitch class set is connected to every other pitch class set."

– @mbnUNT, co-organizer of this week's #musicology working group, presents on how to understand the #topology of #harmonic structures in music with #network diagrams (e.g. Pic 4 with #JSBach's BWV 66):
Once you represent a musical composition as a network, it is possible to examine the evolutionary dynamics of its harmonic content over time, as explained by @mbnUNT in his opening talk for this week's SFI #musicology working group.

(Ironically, this #Beethoven is #scalefree:)
...which brings @mbnUNT to the "Chinese Postman" problem — what are the fewest possible steps required to navigate multilayer score #networks as Eulerian circuits?

And then → measuring Shannon #entropy and #scaling for quantitative measures of the complexity of #music:
"The tools for data analysis & network theory are available..."

- @mbnUNT on the toolkit for studying the network structures of musical harmony, allowing for quantitative comparisons of #FrankZappa & #Queen with #Haydn & #Mozart:
Measuring #entropy and #disequilibrium in the harmonic structure of musical #networks, SFI External Prof @migfreb build on the work of @mbnUNT to compare musical dynamics to social revolution. "What is the probability of a given node of a given degree to be connected to another?"
Studying the arrow of #time in musical #narrative: Gustavo Martinez Mekler uses statistical analysis to differentiate #music from #noise by identifying aspects of temporal asymmetry in compositions. (What is the signature of #creativity in human activity, music or #science?)
What makes #music "pleasant" to listen to?

Gustavo Martinez Mekler on #nonlinearity in composition and the statistical properties correlated to the subjective experience of harmonic structure in #time.

As many have noted, #expectation and #surprise figure into this heavily:
And we're back for day two of our virtual #musicology & #complexsystems working group & sharing what we can of these sessions!

1st up is Dmitri Tymoczko of @Princeton: "I'm going to speak in the language of music, instead of the language of statistics."…
"When you listen to a great composer, they are telling a story by manipulating patterns within this space..."

Dmitri Tymoczko of @Princeton gives a ripping tour of The Quadruple Hierarchy of movement in compositions:

#musicology #harmony #complexity
Using The Quadruple Hierarchy to analyze and automate compositions, Dmitri Tymoczko of @Princeton offers formalisms for understanding and exploring the structure of #music — recording available ASAP, but full slides from this presentation available at
Musical notation dates at least to Ancient Egypt.

"As an archaeologis, I wonder, can we get beyond the artifact & notation? What is the spacing between the notes; what can that tell us? Especially if dozens of bone flutes and the spacings are the same?"
- SFI's @StefaniCrabtree
SFI's @ChrisKempes explores ecological and evolutionary perspectives of artists (in #music and #film), showing #exponential distributions of author/work lifespans that look just like the distributions of #species within #ecosystems:
"Maybe we shouldn't talk about the complexity of #music but the complexities of music, across cultures."

@msantolini of @interactiondata on the incommensurability of different measures of expectation and surprise & how to compare #innovation in one cultural context vs. another:
"When you look at #Bach, it tells you a lot about what was going on in the #culture at the time. It can tell you a lot about the #constraints of culture and opportunities in those constraints."
- SFI's @StefaniCrabtree

#music #musicology #complexsystems
@iotronik on sonifying visual data and then creating feedback loops that use audio to drive imagery — recording available soon:
"A high tech form of primitive performance, in certain ways."

- @iotronik in today's SFI working group on the translation of visual data to audio and back.

"The result is a state of agitation, always becoming."
"We worked with Dale Chihuly's glassblowers and created a sculptural set based on this transform. If I were to map this to a keyboard...I could play melodies with this image. But I'm more interested in the visceral [when] anything I do to the image affects the sound."
– @iotronik
"I have developed an intellectual form of #synaesthesia through practice..."

- @iotronik speaks at SFI today about the creation of virtual A/V ecosystems, the sonification of Indigenous craft patterns, and both analog & digital translations from one sensory domain into another:
"I'm suggesting an exploration of 'dark ecologies,' a term from @the_eco_thought — think 'nano-galactic' — an alternate possibility for what #ambientmusic can be."

- @iotronik on the translation of ecological and structural properties into affective representations & performance
#Critical transitions in musical performances:

@TylerMarghetis on #Autocorrelation & #PunctuatedEquilibrium in musical performance, as in evolutionary ecologies:

"The question is, can you predict these [transitions]? And the answer is, yes."

#jazz #evolution #computers #time

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More from @sfiscience

25 Nov
Today's talk is with neuroscientist #KarlFriston of @ucl, who will offer a heuristic proof suggesting that life is an inevitable emergent property of any weakly mixing random dynamical system that possesses a #Markov blanket.

Tune in here at 12:15 PM MT:…
...and because it's 2020 and nothing is ever simple, we are having technical issues with the stream. The talk is recorded and we will upload it across all of our platforms ASAP. Our apologies!
Spatial boundaries are statistical boundaries: #KarlFriston on #MarkovBlankets, the reciprocal interfacing between internal and external states.

Follow this thread for more highlights from the talk and stay tuned for the video link...
Read 11 tweets
21 Aug
@aeonmag @C4COMPUTATION @MelMitchell1 "Simple cause-effect reasoning, to which the human mind can default, is not a good policy tool. Instead of attempting to narrowly forecast and control outcomes, we need to design systems that are robust and adaptable enough to weather a wide range of possible futures."
@aeonmag @C4COMPUTATION @MelMitchell1 "All human societies are collective & coupled. Collective, meaning our combined behaviour gives rise to society-wide effects. Coupled, in that our perceptions & behaviour depend on the perceptions & behaviour of others & on the social & economic structures we collectively build."
Read 11 tweets
18 Aug
Streaming now: @michaelmina_lab of @HarvardBiz gives today's SFI Seminar on "#Testing our way out of #COVID19: A bumpy but possible path forward."…

Feat. work with Former SFI Postdoc @DanLarremore.

Follow this thread for highlights...
Now may be the best window to squash #COVID19 before flu season begins, but pandemic surveillance—especially in the US—has been a mess.

What are the relative strengths of virus testing vs. serological testing?

@michaelmina_lab speaking at SFI right now:… ImageImageImage
"Really baseline testing doesn't give you enough information. If it tells you there is 5% infection in a nursing home it doesn't tell you if the virus is increasing. But serological testing can. These are complementary tools."

@michaelmina_lab at SFI now:… Image
Read 10 tweets
27 May
Mimicking Simple Life Without Biochemistry

Follow this thread for insights from today's SFI Seminar by Juan Pérez-Mercader (SFI + @Harvard), which you can watch live on our FB page. Recording will be saved for later viewing at this link, as well as YT:…
More info about today's seminar by SFI External Professor Juan Pérez-Mercader (@Harvard) on Mimicking Simple Life Without Biochemistry:…

#astrobiology #biochemistry #complexity
What properties characterize life? The search for a fundamental theory of #biology continues to face some serious challenges:
• n = 1
• no unified math
• can't modify carbon experimentally
• biology is still process-description
BUT: ✨ info-metabolism-replication-evolution ✨
Read 10 tweets
29 Apr
Today at SFI:

External Professor @DaniSBassett (@Penn) on addressing #inequity in the scientific community caused by #bias in #citation practices—focusing on the evidence of a growing #gender imbalance in the reference lists of #neuroscience research.…
The proportion of #neuroscience papers with woman first or last authors grew from 1995 to 2018, but the undercitation of female authors actually *increased* in that time.

SFI's @DaniSBassett (@Penn) on #gender #inequity in the scientific community:
Undercitation of #neuroscience research with first or last woman authors appears to be driven predominantly by the reference lists of papers written by male-male teams.

This is not to say, however, that all men undercite women, or that women do not also undercite women:
Read 7 tweets
31 Mar
Follow this thread for coverage of our SFI Flash Workshop re: #COVID19, "After the First Wave," organized by @mikha_ehl, Cris Moore, & @svscarpino — with presentations by @meyerslab, @Caroline_OF_B, @rajivatbarnard, @glenweyl, & @sdelvall.

More info:…
Some background from Lauren Ancel Meyers @meyerslab about the #epidemiology modeling community's efforts to produce #pandemic projections for the @CDC — first about #influenza and then, suddenly and with the models incomplete, pivoting to #COVID19:
Aggregate data from travel in and out of #Wuhan in early 2020. To infer the pace of the #epidemic, @meyerslab and colleagues used info on timing & location from first cases in other areas, travel volume to/from Wuhan, and gave an early doubling rate for #COVID19:
Read 13 tweets

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