10 July 2017

I’ve created a new website for this MOOC in –


7 July 2017

A bot is an application that performs an automated task, such as setting an alarm, telling you the weather or searching online.
Bots are everywhere in technology, ranging from malicious bots that come with a virus to search engine spiders that crawl the Internet looking for new Web pages to add. In this context, we’re talking about chatbots, which can hold a conversation with you to accomplish a task.

Example of Twitter Bots:

Twitter bot

Musebots –


MusiCog and ManuScore –

Excerpt from a real-time recording of SEASONS, a generative audio-visual experience in the Ambient Video genre. This work results from the work of the Generative Media Project at Simon Fraser University, led by Jim Bizzocchi. More information is available at

Kinetic Engine V3 – MahaDeviBot & GanaPatiBot


AI-based, real-time rendered 3D virtual characters –  Grace and Trip in Façade

Prosthetic Head – 

A robotic installation by Stelarc

Digging on Stelarc’s works, what he subjects his body to, gave me the creeps. He gives a retrospective of his experiments in a TDExVienna talk.

I’ve tried to maintain a dialog with Agent Ruby, in a kind of chat box, but it turned out a bit nonsensical – Agent Ruby is not very smart.

Turing, A.M. (1950). Computing machinery and intelligence. Mind –

Interview with Eugene Goostman, the Fake Kid Who Passed the Turing Test –

The Painting Fool is a computer program and an aspiring painter –




6 July 2017

The BDI model stands for Beliiefs, Desirs and Intentions

BDI model.png

Definition of cognitive agent

def agent

Kinetic Engine is a realtime generative music system that has been in development since 2005. It has been used as an extended instrument within an improvising ensemble, as a networked performance ensemble, as an interactive installation, and as an independent performance system under the composer’s control. The first two versions were solely concerned with polyphonic rhythmic organisation using multi-agents. Version 3 introduced an evolutionary algorithm for the evolution of a population of rhythms, in realtime, based upon the analysis of music provided. Version 4 explored melodic organisation, again using multi-agents, while the most recent version adds a third order Markov model for harmonic generation –

Soar is a general cognitive architecture for developing systems that exhibit intelligent behavior. Researchers all over the world, both from the fields of artificial intelligence and cognitive science, are using Soar for a variety of tasks. It has been in use since 1983, evolving through many different versions to where it is now Soar, Version 9 –

GOAL is an agent programming language for programming cognitive agentsGOAL agents derive their choice of action from their beliefs and goals. The language provides the key building blocks for designing and implementing cognitive agents. The language elements and features of GOAL allow and facilitate the manipulation of an agent’s beliefs and goals and to structure its decision-making. The language provides an intuitive programming framework based on common sense notions and basic practical reasoning –

SARL – General-purpose Agent-Oriented Programming Language –

JADE – JAVA Agent DEvelopment Framework – is an open source platform for peer-to-peer agent based applications –

The Art of Twitter Art –

5 July

In probability theory, a Markov model is a stochastic model used to model randomly changing systems where it is assumed that future states depend only on the current state not on the events that occurred before it (that is, it assumes the Markov property). Generally, this assumption enables reasoning and computation with the model that would otherwise be intractable. For this reason, in the fields of predictive modelling and probabilistic forecasting, it is desirable for a given model to exhibit the Markov property (

Markov models

Key Chords – guitar chords and progression –

Casey Reas talks about how to draw with code. For Casey Reas, software is the most natural medium to work with. He uses code to express his thoughts—starting with a sketch, composing it in code, and witnessing the imagery that it ultimately creates. We visit his studio to see how he uses color to convey emotion and how his programming language Processing is closing the gap between software and object.

4 July 2017

The resources of session 3 give links examples of compositions, such as the Illiac Suite, the first musical composition for traditional instruments that was made through computer by Lejaren Hiller and Leonard Isaacson. More info:…

“Turbulence: an interactive museum of unnatural history”, by Jon McCormack. The work was developed from 1990-1994 using custom software for evolving L-systems developed by the artist. The form and animation were evolved using a type of interactive genetic algorithm. This is a short excerpt from the work.


Jon McCormack is an australian artist –

Interactive Plant Growing, une oeuvre de Christa Sommerer et Laurent Mignonneau

Fractal Growér – L-System rules and gramar –

Book «The Algorythmic Beauty of Plants» –

Jean Pierre Balpe generative literature

Inspired by cell division, Michael Hansmeyer writes algorithms that design outrageously fascinating shapes and forms with millions of facets. No person could draft them by hand, but they’re buildable — and they could revolutionize the way we think of architectural form.
Michael Hansmeyer is an architect and programmer who explores the use of algorithms and computation to generate architectural form. Full bio:…

3 July 2017

Session 3 focus on the gramars and programming of generative systems. Some exemples of programes developed by authors and musicians were mentioned, such as David Cope’s EMI software, which receives inputs of classic music composers and reproduces the same style –

EMI Webste –

Another interesting example of generative poetry, but non-digital, was Raymond Quesneau «Cent Mille Milliard de poèmes», who was influenced by the surrealist movement and the automatic writing and who produced a few sonets that were edited in strips of verses, making possible the re-composition of the verses, and multiple versions of poems. He founds OULIPO Ouvroir de littérature potentielle, a loose gathering of (mainly) French-speaking writers and matematicians who seek to create works using constrained writing techniques

Principles and Processes of Generative Literature, by Jean Pierre Balpe –

Kinetic Engine is a realtime generative music system that has been in development since 2005. It has been used as an extended instrument within an improvising ensemble, as a networked performance ensemble, as an interactive installation, and as an independent performance system under the composer’s control. The first two versions were solely concerned with polyphonic rhythmic organisation using multi-agents. Version 3 introduced an evolutionary algorithm for the evolution of a population of rhythms, in realtime, based upon the analysis of music provided. Version 4 explored melodic organisation, again using multi-agents, while the most recent version adds a third order Markov model for harmonic generation.


1 July 2017

A Google search on poem generators resulted in:

Poem Engine –

Mesostic generator –

A long list of programmes based on fractal equations were included in the resources of session 2, both for music and image:

ArtSong  – –  is an integrated algorithmic music composition system that uses algorithms to generate musical structure and compose MIDI parts within that structure.  ArtSong™ provides a wide variety of algorithms and functions including: quadratic and iterated function system attractors; cyclic-pattern generators; image-to-music, text-to-music, mandelbrot-set, and julia-set functions; several probability distributions; and more.

Fractal Tune Smithy – – you can vary the parameters to make them into your own tunes. With just a small change the entire tune transforms completely – just as happens with fractal images. No experience of composition is needed for these.

Aural fractals – – fractal music generator that creates endless musical themes from Chaos


FractMus – – is a freeware algorithmic-music generator, that is, it creates melodies using mathematical formulas.

Incendia – – Fractal Engine that allows you to design and explore the realm of 3D Fractals

XenoDream –

Apophysis –   – freeware fractal flame for Windows

Fractal Explorer – – this website has the aim to introduce you to the world of fractals. A world that seems to be chaotic but when you look closer, patterns emerge. Not only are fractals theoretical mathematical constructs; the theory of fractals can be applied to fractals in nature, too.

Fractint – – freeware fractal generator created for IBMPC’s and compatible computers.

MandelBulber – –  is an experimental application that helps to make rendering 3D Mandelbrot fractals much more accessible. A few of the supported 3D fractals: Mandelbulb, Mandelbox, BulbBox, JuliaBulb, Menger Sponge, Quaternion, Trigonometric, Hypercomplex, and Iterated Function Systems (IFS). All of these can be combined into infinite variations with the ability to hybridize different formulas together.

Frax – – the reborn Frax, now orchestrating new algorithms in an intricate dance between CPU and GPU is literally… 400 times faster! Totally immersive in realtime you can now zoom into more than a trillion-to-one depth range of the classic Mandelbrot set and, for the first time ever, the more self-similar Julia sets can be zoomed… infinitely!

Ultra Fractal – with Ultra Fractal, you can choose from thousands of fractal types and coloring algorithms, zoom in as far as you want, use gradients to add color, and apply multiple layers to combine different fractals in one image.

Fractal Dementia – the art of Mark Townsend

Étiènne Saint – Amant exhibition –



Bogdan Soban art –


Bogdan Soban generative art

Iannis Xenakis – Erikhton – generative music


Re-visiting o Google’s Deep Dream Generator


Original free image

and deep dream variations

deep dream BWbackground3deep dream BWbackground2deep dream BWbackground

Another free original image of a stone wall and its deep style

30 June 2017

In topic 2 some history of generative art is made pointing out a few authors such as in the  literary field, dating back to the 15th century Jean Machinot who composes  Litanies de la Vierge (1461-1464):

«…un poème combinatoire sous-titré « Oraison qui peut se dire par huit ou seize vers, tant en rétrogradant que autrement ». Il s’agit d’un ensemble de 8 vers qui possèdent des rimes intérieures, de sorte qu’on peut en extraire d’autres litanies correctement rimées. Il est possible, par ce simple procédé, d’obtenir, d’après Bernard Magné, 43 008 litanies différentes à partir de ce poème de 8 vers !

Les 8 vers initiaux sont :

D’honneur sentier, confort sûr et parfait,
Rubis chéri, saphir très précieux,
Cœur doux et cher, support bon en tout fait,
Infini prix, plaisir mélodieux,
Éjouis ris, souvenir gracieux,
Dame de sens, mère de Dieu très nette,
Appuis rassis, désir humble joyeux,
M’âme défends, très chère pucelette.»

Qu’est-ce que la littérature générative combinatoire ? –

In the XVII century the german poet Quirinus Kuhlmann composes XLIe baiser d’amour céleste l’alternance des choses humaines(1671).

«Il s’agit d’un poème dans lequel certains mots peuvent permuter de toutes les façons possibles. On peut alors générer 6 227 020 800 poèmes à partir du poème initial qui contient 4 strophes. Le premier et le dernier mot de chaque vers sont fixes et les 13 autres peuvent permuter.»

In 1961, a collective of french authors and mathematicians  – – make generative experiments with structures to produce literature:

«Recherchant les structures formelles linguistiques utilisables par les écrivains et les poètes, l’OULIPO a une approche mathématique et algorithmique de la littérature. Pour ce faire, ces expérimentateurs, comme ils se nomment, se donnent des contraintes, c’est-à-dire un certain nombre de règles fixes, intangibles et prédéfinies qu’ils utilisent de façon systématique pour produire un texte.»

OULIPO extends to Jacques Bens, Noël Arnaud, Pierre Lescure, Georges Perec, Paul Fournel, Jacques Roubaud and to USA with Paul Braffort. Marcel Duchamp, Italo Calvino and Harry Mathews.

«L’œuvre fondatrice de L’OULIPO, les Cent mille milliards de poèmes [14] de Raymond de Queneau, connaîtra de multiples programmations informatiques et deviendra une référence pour la littérature numérique.

In 1964, Jean Baudot publishes «La Machine à Ecrire», the first book to be created by a computer using the following procedures:

  • 1. la machine élabore une structure d’éléments phraséologiques qui respecte les règles de syntaxe ;
  • 2. la machine détermine le genre, le nombre ou le temps de chacun de ces éléments ;
  • 3. la machine choisit des mots dans un lexique, afin de construire la phrase définie par la structure syntactique ;
  • 4. la machine rédige la phrase en respectant les règles de concordance, d’accord, d’élision, etc.

Pedro Barbosa é um dos primeiros investigadores da literatura gerada por computador, com o seu programa SINTEXT

29 June 2017

The Continuator – a music programme that mimics a player’s  style and generates identical music as a continuum, turning difficult to identify what has been played by the human and what has been played by the machine – a machine learning programme

Aaron a computer generator art created by artist Harold Cohen –

Creativity at the meta-level –

A panel discussion on Creativity and Computers with Margaret Boden –

An interesing TED talk on how computers are learning to be Creative


Definition of «creativity»:

Creativity is the ability to come up with ideas or artifacts that are original and valuable» (Margareth Boden, 2004)

«Creativity is the capability or act of conceiving something original or unusual Innovation is the implementation of something new. Invention is the creation of something that has never been made before and is recognized as the product of some unique insight.» –

Hans Haacke statement could be a generative art  manifesto –

28 June 2017

Definition of generative art:

Generative art is as old as art itself. This paper adresses its definition –

The definition of art may be controversial and social and historical contexts may question the aesthetics that prevail. The generative notion is a subset of art where multiple outcomes may derive from a kind of generative system.

Contemporary generative art is associated to different fields of activity, such as electronic music and algorythmic composition, computer graphics and animation, industrial design and architecture.

Some artists and writers have embraced randomization as a technique to produce art, John Cage with his sound experimentations (or with silence), John Cage also experimented generative poetry with the Mesostic and an aplication that generates it –;  William S. Burroughs used a cut-up technique in his poetry and novel Naked Lunch, and Marcel Duchamps gave art meaning to everyday life objects.

For John Cage the motivation for randomnization was a Zen inspired acceptance of all sounds as being equally worthy.

The definition given in this paper for «generative art» is as follows:

«Generative art refers to any art practice where the artista uses a system, such as a set of natural language rules, a computer program, a machine, or other procedural invention, which is set into motion with some degree of autonomy, contributing to or resulting in a completed work of art».

Generative art is about «how» art is made and not why.

Complexity science and theory deals with the understanding of various kinds of systems, generative art is rooted in complex systems. Complex systems tipically have a large number of small parts and components that interact with similar nearby parts and componentes. These  interactions often lead to the self organization of the system without any master control or external agent in charge. These self-organizing systems are dynamic systems under constant change, like a swarm of starlings or a shoal of fish, self organizing and moving around for defense techniques, without crashing on each other. Complexity theory deals with notions of chaos and randomness. However chaotic systems are not random systems, since they present some general structure non existent in random systems. Dynamic systems are nonlinear and may be chaotic and unpredictable, like the weather or a person’s life itself.

Notions of order and disorder applied to music may result in an analysis of identifying order with «banal» and disorder with «novel», so a folk music might be banal because it uses a certain pattern of ordered notes while free jazz being a novelty because it uses unpredictable notes in a disorderd way (Information Theory and Aesthetic Perception, by Abraham Moles, 1958).

In principle, any system can be mapped into the smallest program running in a computer generating a growing string as output over time, like fractals. Fractals are complex systems though simple in their self similar structure at every scale, but taking infinite time to develop infinite detail.

A diagram presents generative art systems related to order and disorder dimensions, in Gary Flakes book «The computational beauty of Nature»

Generative art systems diagram

Symmetry is present in many works of art across times, patterns in textiles and tapestry have been used in ancient cultures and primitive tribes have used patterns in body paintings. The artistic use of tiling is remote as well, ceramic master works of Islamic  culture  from which «algorythm» derives. The west inherited the great mathmatic knowledge of the Arabs, and their art reveals that side of  mathematical order.

Many artists and architects used symmetry and repetitive elements and patterns. M.C. Escher expresses that math, perspective and pattern dimensions, though many o his works are known for the «impossible constructions» that defy that order or the «optical illusions».

Conceptual artists use simple geometric shapes like Carl Andre, Donald Judd, Sol LeWitt.

The cutting edge of generative art is working with systems that combine order and disorder.

Generative art may be interactive or not. The Continuator is interactive

Generative art prior to computers can be seen in Jacquard’s loom invention (1804) using punch cards to weave the patterns. Later on, Charles Babbage and Charles Hollerith would take punch card programming to the invention of computer.

Babbage first computer

Charles Babbage first computer, 1846

Generative art will evolve after the computer with nanotechnology, genetic engineering, robotics, and other technologies to come.


27 June 2017

Generative Art and Computational Creativity was launched by Simon Fraser University’s School of Interactive Arts and Technology of Canada, in Kadenze platform with the following syllabus:

Session 1: Introduction and Typology of Generative Art
To start off this course, we define generative art and computational creativity and discuss how these relate through the study of prominent examples. We establish a typology of generative systems based on levels of autonomy and agency.

Session 2: History Of Generative Art, Chance Operations, and Chaos Theory
Generative art is nothing new, and this session goes through the history of the field from pre-history to the popularization of computers. We study chance, noise, fractals, chaos theory, and their applications in visual art and music.

Session 3: Rule-Based Systems, Grammars and Markov Chains
This session introduces and illustrate the generative potential of rule-based and expert systems. We study generative grammars through the Chomsky hierarchy, and introduce L-systems, shape grammars, and Markov chains. We discuss how these have been applied in visual art, music, design, architecture, and electronic literature.

Session 4: Cognitive Agents And Multiagent Systems
This session introduces the concepts underlying the notion of artificial agents. We study the belief, desire, and intention (BDI) cognitive architecture, and message based agent communication resting on the speech act theory. We discuss musical agents, conversational agents, chat bots and twitter bots and their artistic potential.

Session 5: Reactive Agents And Multiagent Systems 
In this session, we introduce reactive agents and the subsumption architecture. We study boids, and detail how complex behaviors can emerge from a distributed population of simple artificial agents. We look at a myriad of applications from ant painting to swarm music and we discuss artistic approaches to virtual ecosystems.

Session 6: A-Life And Cellular Automaton 
In this concluding session, we introduce artificial life (A-life). We study cellular automaton, multi-agent ecosystems for music, visual art, non-photorealistic rendering, and gaming. The session also concludes the class by reflecting on the state of the art in the field and its consequences on creative practices.