Exposing Parameters of a Trained Dynamic Model for Interactive Music Creation

Dan Morris, Ian Simon, Sumit Basu

As machine learning (ML) systems emerge in end-user applications, learning algorithms and classifiers will need to be robust to an increasingly unpredictable operating environment. In many cases, the parameters governing a learning system cannot be optimized for every user scenario, nor can users typically manipulate parameters defined in the space and terminology of ML. Conventional approaches to user-oriented ML systems have typically hidden this complexity from users by automating parameter adjustment. We propose a new paradigm, in which model and algorithm parameters are exposed directly to end-users with intuitive labels, suitable for applications where parameters cannot be automatically optimized or where there is additional motivation – such as creative flexibility – to expose, rather than fix or automatically adapt, learning parameters. In our CHI 2008 paper, we introduced and evaluated MySong, a system that uses a Hidden Markov Model to generate chords to accompany a vocal melody. The present paper formally describes the learning underlying MySong and discusses the mechanisms by which MySong’s learning parameters are exposed to users, as a case study in making ML systems user-configurable. We discuss the generalizability of this approach, and propose that intuitively exposing ML parameters is a key challenge for the ML and human-computer-interaction communities.

Subjects: 1.1 Art And Music; 12. Machine Learning and Discovery

Submitted: Apr 10, 2008

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