Max Mathews

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A pioneer in the world of computer music.

"The first real music program was written by Max Mathews in the early 1960s. He was working at Bell labs, a research center run by AT&T when they were the phone company. Max was primarily developing more practical things for the phone company (he invented the little square plug, for instance). But he worked on music software in his spare time. He called his software MUSIC, with the different versions indicated by Roman numerals. MUSIC made its first sound in 1957, playing single line tunes. MUSIC II, a year later, had four part polyphony. These ran on the most powerful computer of the day, and took something like an hour of computing time to generate a minute of music. The sound was similar to the tunes played by some wristwatches today" Short History of Computer Music.