Articles  |    |  November 16, 2011

Trading Faures: Virtual Musicians and Machine Ethics

Article by Nick Collins.
Published in Leonardo Music Journal.


Increased maturity in modeling human musicianship leads to many interesting artistic achievements and challenges. This article takes the opportunity to reflect on future situations in which virtual musicians are traded like baseball cards, associated content-creator and autonomous musical agent rights, and the musical and moral conundrums that may result. Although many scenarios presented here may seem far-fetched with respect to the current level of artificial intelligence, it remains prudent and artistically stimulating to consider them. Accepting basic human curiosity and research teleology, it is salutary to consider the more distant consequences of our actions with respect to aesthetics and ethics.