Musical Meter 1
In response to music, listeners (who "understand" the music) assign a
meter to it.
A meter is a regular alternating pattern of beats of different
The meter is something psychological; it is in the mind of the
listener, not (necessarily) in the music.
- A symbolic/centralized account of this process would propose a set
of rules, for example,
If there are two beats in close succession which seem equally accented,
treat the second one as stronger.
At any given point during processing, the central control of the system
selects the rule which is most appropriate and applies it.
- A distributed account of this process might propose a large
network of simple interconnected neuron-like elements.
At any given time, each of the elements has an activation (a number)
and the power to activate or inhibit (deactivate) other elements.
The network can also be activated by a pattern from the outside
When it is activated by a rhythmical pattern, the network eventually
exhibits a pattern of activation among the elemnts which corresponds
to the assigned meter.
For a strong beat, for example, a large number of the elements are