|Frequently Asked Questions
is Symbolic Composer and how does it operate?
Because of its unique design Symbolic Composer can play many
In Symbolic Composer's terms music is thought of as a
expressed in melodies, rhythms, notes, durations, harmonies,
tonalities, chords and intervals. This language is largely
lying invisibly behind sound and timbre as the inner
substance of the
- Symbolic Composer is a production tool for making
- It is an expert-system for music composition.
- It is a programming language for musicians based on
- Symbolic Composer is a mapper enabling any data to
No matter what style or idiom you work in the basic elements
language are always present.
What I will need?
To run Symbolic Composer you need a Macintosh or Windows PC
and 2-16 GB RAM and
200-400 MB hard disk depending on the disk partitioning.
But the most important thing is: You do need a willingness
time out to learn a new language.
I see, it is non-profit
project, what does it mean?
Symbolic Composer is a non-profit Artificial Intelligence
project, and needs your contributions to cover the
maintenance costs caused by OS changes, bug fixes and new
Upgrades are used to cover these costs. This enables it to
keep stable during the future. SCOM has been kept stable
this way from the 80's, and its base is from 50's. You
future is safe this way. You grow older and SCOM keeps
running. Your scores preserve while platforms fail. You are
part of A.I. It is not Skynet.
How does it play back MIDI?
SCOM plays back with MidiTrail, or with your sequencer. SCOM can
results into any decent sequencer or notation program such
as iTunes, QuickTime, Windows Media Player,
Logic, Ableton, Performer, Notator, Finale, Sibelius, MuseScore and
many others. If SCOM cannot directly command your DAW,
you can manually import or drag SCOM MIDI file into it. You
can select DAW from menus. SCOM has universal support for
How does the demo version
SCOM demo mode shows you the interface items and provides
you full access to documents.
You can play back demo scores, but if you want to compile
your own scores
you need to contribute to the project.
What kind of music does
SCOM is a context-free music language. Context-free means
does not restrict the style you want to compose with it. You
can do anything.
Is it realtime?
Yes. Compilation occurs in few seconds and you can play back
the piece immediately.
Can I use live input from a
No. That is improvising. In SCOM you would think how to
write a piece of
code that improvises instead of you.
Can I program my own code?
Yes. You can define new
functions and add them to the system. That is how SCOM
has been developed by users from the beginning.
Who is a typical user?
A composer who has a clear mind open for new. Fascination to
find out new
solutions to experiment with.
Is it easy to learn?
With open mind SCOM is like a modular synth. You wire it the
way you feel. You will find SCOM suddenly gives you
capabilities to exceed your knowledge. No
matter what style or direction your music takes it, Symbolic
you handle that.
You are probably familiar with myriad Youtube videos, which
show you how to do things, right? Just write some text
snippets in the SCOM editor and experiment. Then compile it
to a MIDI to play your synths. No wasting time on watching videos.
It's mindplay now.
What is the best way to
The best way to learn it is an open attitude and making lots
experimentations. Like an instrument it does not open up
reading a book. SCOM includes a lot of example scores to