Spring 2008»CSCI 180 Homework 2

CSCI 180 Homework 2

Assigned Date: Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2008
Due Date: Monday, Feb. 25, 2008
Due Time: noon

Last modified on February 20, 2008, at 01:40 PM (see updates)


This assignment focuses on creating music with computers. You will create music with Audacity and Scratch. Audacity will be used to process audio sounds. Scratch will be used to assemble them into a "music" composition.


Create a composition in the musique concrète style:

Musique concrète (French; literally, "concrete music"), is a style of avant-garde music that relies on natural environmental sounds and other non-inherently-musical noises to create music.


Create a design of your composition, where you specify what types of notes, sounds, etc., you will use.

For inspiration:

Of course, there are many other great (better?) examples of musique concrète. Find and listen to some more before deciding what to "compose".


You should use at least three sprites with different scripts playing as least three parallel streams of music. At least one of the streams should be MIDI. At least one of the streams should be audio (imported into Scratch).

Feel free to use Audacity to manipulate audio before importing it to Scratch. However, do NOT use Audacity to mix different sounds together (in any substantial way, e.g., drums and guitar) only to import them as a single audio file in Scratch. Instead use Scratch to do the "mixing", by playing two (or more) audio sounds in two (or more) parallel streams.

For each of your sprites use a representative costume (imported image). Avoid using caricature costumes provided with Scratch. Use realistic looking ones (e.g., a real guitar, or a real (human) guitar player, or a waterfall, or whatever your sound is about.)


Consider making the music interactive (e.g., mouse input affects the behavior of the playback). Animation is not important.


  1. Compress your Scratch project - see Scratch button 'Extras'.
  2. Upload your project to WebCT.


Your assignment will be graded based on:

  • how aesthetically interesting your music is,
  • the variety of ideas you tried in your design of the composition, and
  • how well you followed the above instructions.


For your in-class demo, you should:

  • Discuss your composition design.
  • Illustrate your design by discussing different components in Scratch.
  • Play your music.


Each student will vote for the three best projects (excluding their own), in terms of originality, significance, sound appeal, and presentation/demo.