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Barry Vercoe

OLPC Australia

Professor of Music and Professor of Media Arts and Sciences at MIT, and a founding member of the MIT Media Lab. He was born and educated in New Zealand, attended Auckland Teachers College, then earned a doctorate in Music Composition at the University of Michigan in USA. In 1968 at Princeton University he did pioneering work in the field of Digital Audio Processing, and then taught at Yale University before joining the MIT faculty in 1971.

During the '70's and early 80's he pioneered the composition of works combining computers and live instruments. On a Guggenheim Fellowship in Paris in 1983 he developed a Synthetic Performer -- a computer that could listen to other performers and play its own part in musical sync, even learning from rehearsals. In 1992 he won the Computer World / Smithsonian Award in Media Arts and Entertainment, in 2004 gained the SEAMUS Lifetime Achievement Award, and in 2006 the World Academy of Science Distinguished Achievement Award.

A founding member of the MIT Media Lab, Barry has pursued research in Music Cognition and Machine Understanding. A variant of his Csound language serves as the core of MPEG-4 audio -- an international standard for efficient transmission of audio over the Internet -- and powers the TamTam suit of XO activities.