Created by artist Martin Backes, this installation of a lone “robot” singing 90s power ballads is almost hypnotizing in a quietly terrifying way.
Fittingly created with SuperCollider, a freeware audio program that synthesizes audio using algorithms, “What do machines sing of?” is an art project where the machine attempts to mimic human sentiment in an extremely haunting way:
“What do machines sing of?“ is a fully automated machine, which endlessly sings number-one ballads from the 1990s. As the computer program performs these emotionally loaded songs, it attempts to apply the appropriate human sentiments. This behavior of the device seems to reflect a desire, on the part of the machine, to become sophisticated enough to have its very own personality.”
Let’s hope the behavior of this device doesn’t reflect a desire, on the part of the machine, to become sophisticated enough begin giving motivational speeches to robots within earshot on how to overthrow the human race.