Datamation, May 1972

Kyle Owen kylevowen at
Thu Nov 17 14:44:55 CST 2016

On Thu, Nov 17, 2016 at 10:10 AM, Paul Koning <paulkoning at>

> Interesting.  From around 1975 or so, and worth learning about is the
> music synthesizer developed on the PLATO system at the University of
> Illinois by Sherwin Gooch.  The hardware is described in great detail
> (including full schematics) in US Patent 4,206,675.  The software includes
> a music code compiler, using a code somewhat like the one you referenced
> but different in details.  I don't know if one borred from the other or if
> they are independent inventions.  (Sherwin might remember.)
> A few years later PLATO added a 16 channel waveform synthesis device,
> controlled by the microprocessor in the terminals.  It had a similar music
> code, plus support for a piano keyboard (with key velocity sensing) for
> music input with real time display of the score, as well as score
> printing.  Not long after, Lippold Haken created a keyboard that's
> continuous rather than discrete (think of a keyboard like the fingerboard
> of a violin); a successor of that is still sold today.

I'd be very interested in any sound samples, if anyone has any...I guess
that's perhaps unlikely. And on that note (heh), are there any other
computer music albums out there? I know of the First Philadelphia Computer
Music Festival, the two Unplayed by Human Hands, and it looks like the
University of Melbourne had an electronic music album too. There's a 45
entitled Computer Composites that featured several IBM systems,

I'm finding it rather difficult to find LPs that are assuredly produced by
a digital computer versus by other electronic means, like early
synthesizers, etc.

Thanks, Al, for the scan upload! I've enjoyed reading that.


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