Australia wins Eurovision’s 2020 AI song contest

Australia’s song, Beautiful the World, reflects on nature’s recovery after the Australian bush fires

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Australian’s Eurovision team, Uncanny Valley, has been announced as this year’s winners for Eurovision’s annual songwriting competition with their entry, Beautiful the World. Interestingly enough, this was a song created with artificial intelligence.

Australia’s team, Uncanny Valley, composed the song having been inspired by the Australian bush fires and how the world has been healing since then. Using AI, the team drew on past submission to the Eurovision contest and interspersed them with audio samples of koalas, kookaburras, and Tasmanian devils.

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Beautiful the World quickly became the popular vote of the people. The official judges, composed of AI experts Vincent Koops, Anna Huang, and Ed Newton-Rex also rated the song rather highly despite giving the German team the highest possible points or “douze points.”

This year’s competition is, of course, taking place in a different format than how past competitions have taken place. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, Eurovision had to cancel the actual event which was supposed to held in Rotterdam after having the Netherlands win last year’s contest.

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Dutch broadcaster, VPRO, came up with the idea of having an online competition to replace the canceled live event. This year’s competition included an added twist of having to use AI in the creation of the song.

The panel says that “composing a song with AI is hard because you have all the creative challenges that come with songwriting, but you also have to juggle getting the machine learning right.”

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Source: BBC