Music and Sound Research

Music as Digital Object

Digital music files and the Internet have completely changed the ways in which music is shared and disseminated. It is possible to widely distribute perfect copies of a musical recording virtually instantly via the Internet. This poses tremendous challenges for the traditional music business in terms of digital rights management, but it also has created tremendous opportunities, such as iTunes. We are interested in the development of new digital watermarking technologies that may be employed for digital rights management but also in finding new ways to employ such technologies to enable users to embed “metadata” in their music without compromising audio quality. This could range from embedding the score of a symphony in a CD recording of the piece, which would be great for music libraries, to computer programs that allow users to customize their MP3’s by embedding commentary or other information within a music file. With the help of funding from the Kauffman Entrepreneurial program we also are studying how new uses of such technologies will emerge and develop in on-line communities.