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Electronic and Computer Music$
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Peter Manning

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199746392

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199746392.001.0001

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The Microprocessor Revolution

The Microprocessor Revolution

Chapter:
(p.217) 12 The Microprocessor Revolution
Source:
Electronic and Computer Music
Author(s):

Peter Manning

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199746392.003.0012

This chapter describes the advent of microprocessors and their impact on the development of computer music. Intel manufactured the first true microprocessor — the 4004 — in 1971. By today's standards, this device was extremely slow and hard to program, difficulties in the latter context being compounded by the fact that only four bits of data or programming code could be handled at a time. Using early single-board microcomputers, a number of enthusiasts began to exploring applications of a musical nature, in particular the construction of elementary control systems for analog synthesizers, communicating data values via a simple low resolution digital-to-analog converter. In 1976, the 6502-based KIM-1 board manufactured by Commodore, attracted particular attention in this context.

Keywords:   microprocessors, electronic music, computer music, microcomputers, KIM-1 board

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