Can you listen to coding on Spotify?

In the introductory computer science course offered through Break Through Tech Chicago, Andrew Davis argued “yes.”

Davis, a computer science professor at Wellesley College, classically trained composer, and visiting guest expert in the CS 100 course, shared how computer science is a big part of the music industry. Musicians and recording artists are increasingly interested in industry-specific software that is created by computer engineers and programmers.

Davis demonstrated SuperCollider, a free program he uses. It comes with basic predefined instruments, but musical artists can also use it as a programming language to build their own virtual instruments.

In Davis’s view, a computer is just another musical instrument. “At the end of the day, audio is just a set of numbers, and we can manipulate numbers,” he explained. “On your computer, music is just a set of numbers.”