Figure 2.

The appreciation of music is a function of information compression. From our perspective as human listeners, this reflects the mismatch in complexity between what our ears initially perceive, versus what our brains ultimately interpret. This hypothesis is schematically represented here for two pieces of music: Beethoven's 3rd Symphony and ElBeano's Ventilator trance techno. The two compositions are approximately the same length (4 minutes 7 seconds versus 4 minutes 9 seconds), and approximately the same initial audio file size (43.6 Mb versus 44.0 Mb). Beethoven's piece has the interesting dual property of appearing more sophisticated but being more simple (compressing to 40.6% as compared to 65.8% of original file size). The learning curve, or "information compression epiphany", is thus substantially larger and more rewarding for Beethoven's piece.

Hudson BMC Research Notes 2011 4:9   doi:10.1186/1756-0500-4-9
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