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The 1983 film "Discovering Electronic Music" is an introduction to the synthesizers and computers used to create electronic music. The film explains the basics of how sound is converted into electrical signals, the functions of oscillators, envelopes and filters, and the roles of samplers and sequencers.  

Computers have revolutionized music-making. Two of the most important pioneers of computer music, Max Mathews and John Chowning, stand at the epicenter of this musical revolution. Research led by Mathews at Bell Laboratories, beginning in the 1950s, created a series of programming languages that are the direct precursors of today's software synthesizers. His many contributions to interactive music systems, algorithmic composition, and psychoacoustics (with Jean-Claude Risset) are equally seminal. Stanford's legendary Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA, pronounced karma) led by Chowning, has long been a hotbed of innovation. After groundbreaking research in sound spatialization, Chowning's invention of frequency modulation (FM) synthesis led to the most successful synthesizer of all time: the Yamaha DX7. Join Chowning and Mathews in conversation with Curtis Roads, composer and music historian. This will be followed by Chryssie Nanou (pianist) performing, Duet for One Pianist."  
 

Post-war Britain rebuilt itself on a wave of scientific and industrial breakthroughs that culminated in the cultural revolution of the 1960’s. It was a period of sweeping change and experimentation where art and culture participated in and reflected the wider social changes. In this atmosphere was born the Electronic Music Studios (EMS), a radical group of avant-garde electronic musicians who utilized technology and experimentation to compose a futuristic electronic sound-scape for the New Britain.  
 

'The Shape of Things That Hum' is the story of the cult electronic instruments that have shaped modern music. It consists of a series of 8 programs of 10 minutes duration shown early in the morning during the months of January and February 2001. It features various artists discussing the hardware in their music.  
 

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