Goodbye, Jukedeck!

This is just a quick post to let everyone know that I have decided to leave Jukedeck. It’s been a unique and fascinating journey the past three or so years with a flexible and forward-thinking company, and a stimulating work environment. I couldn’t have asked for a more apt transition into employment after my PhD than the one that led me to Jukedeck and I’m really grateful for all that I have learned here, the people I’ve had the opportunity to work with and everything the company has done for me during this period. This also means that I’m no longer going to be living or working in the UK, and my wife Nina and I have some new and exciting plans for the future that I’m really looking forward to.

There have also been some interesting developments in regards to where I’ll be going and what I’ll be doing next now that my tenure at Jukedeck has come to an end. I’ll post updates here on my blog as and when things take shape in the coming months.

Oral Presentation at the 19th International Society for Music Information Retrieval Conference

A few months following the acceptance of our paper at ISMIR 2018, I attended the conference in Paris with several of my colleagues from Jukedeck. We had a fairly large presence there dwarfed (as far as I can tell) only by a larger one from Spotify. The conference was organised very well and everything went-off smoothly. It was great to be back in the beautiful city after my last visit nearly 8 years ago!

I was particularly pleased by the new format for presenting accepted papers at this ISMIR wherein each paper was given both oral and poster presentation slots thus removing the traditional distinction between papers that exists in conferences. In the case of our paper on StructureNet, I made the oral presentation and my colleagues and co-authors – Gabriele and Marco – made the poster presentation. Fortunately, this year ISMIR was streamed live and the videos were later stored on YouTube so I’m able to share the video of my presentation with you. It’s only a 4-minute presentation so do check it out! And it appeared to me each time I passed our poster by that it received a lot of attention, and this was of course great! I, with help from members of my team, also prepared a blog post on StructureNet which was published recently on Jukedeck R & D Team’s Medium page. I urge you to give it a read if you’re curious what the paper is all about. Here’s a picture of the Jukedeck team at ISMIR:

The Jukedeck Team at ISMIR 2018 – (from left-to-right) Ben, Reinier, Gabriele, Matt, me, Katerina and Marco.

I also signed up to play in this year’s ISMIR jam session organised by Uri Nieto from Pandora! If I remember correctly, it’s something that started in 2014 and has been getting more popular by the year. As anticipated, the jam session was a success and a lot of fun, with music ranging from AI-composed folk tunes to Jazz, Blues, Rock and Heavy Metal. I played two songs with my fellow attendees – Blackest Eyes by Porcupine Tree and Plush by Stone Temple Pilots. My friend Juanjo shared a recording of the first song with me in which I played bass.

As always, ISMIR this year provided a great opportunity to make new acquaintances, and meet old friends and colleagues. As it turns out quite a few of my friends from the Music Informatics Research Group (MIRG) at City, University of London showed up this time and it was great to catch up with them.

The MIRG at ISMIR 2018: (from left-to-right, back-to-front) Shahar, me, Daniel, Tillman, Andreas, Radha and Reinier.

And to top it all off, my master thesis supervisor Hendrik Purwins managed to make it to the conference on the last day giving me the opportunity to get this one selfie with Tillman (my PhD thesis supervisor) and him.

Tillman, me and Hendrik at the conference venue.

Participating in CSMC 2017 Panel Discussion

At 11:30 on the 13th of September, 2017  I will be participating in a panel discussion on the subject of “Applying Musical Patterns in Generation” together with Elaine Chew, Roger Dean, Steven Jan, David Meredith and Tillman Weyde. It is being organised by Iris Yuping Ren as a part of the 2nd Conference on Computer Simulation of Musical Creativity between the 11th-13th of September, 2017 at Milton-Keynes, UK.

Really excited and looking forward to it!

Jukedeck @ The Science Museum Lates

I had the opportunity to join my colleagues at Jukedeck – Patrick, Lydia, Eliza, Matt, Katerina and Gabriele – at the Science Museum Lates last night. For those of you that are unfamiliar with the concept, Lates are adults-only, after-hours theme nights that take place in The Science Museum (in London) on the last Wednesday of every month. It is attended by various organisations that would like to showcase their work relating to a chosen theme to an audience, as well as an audience that is keen on learning more about the science and technology underlying the theme. On the last day of August 2016, it was Jukedeck’s turn to show-off its awesome technology at the museum and some of us volunteered to tag along.

Lydia and me (in the background) explaining what Jukedeck and its technology is about to curious visitors at our stall.

The museum was packed with visitors, and it was great to see so many people interested in our technology! I hardly had the time to go grab some dinner amidst the constant stream of people wanting to listen to our music and know more about the underlying algorithms. To me, as someone who does the research and writes the code that generates our music, this was an incredibly rewarding experience to see first-hand the appreciation people had for our work. It’s, in many ways, like having a poster presentation at a conference but with a non-technical audience. I enjoyed it very muchIn the future, I’ll try my best not to let such opportunities pass. And I look forward to attending the event myself in the future as a spectator! If you happen to be in London around the time this event is on, I highly recommend attending it if you’re interested in science and technology.