Physarum-Based Memristors for Computer Music

  • Edward Braund
  • Raymond Sparrow
  • Eduardo Miranda
Part of the Emergence, Complexity and Computation book series (ECC, volume 21)


We present results into harnessing the memristive characteristics of Physarum polycephalum for computer music. Memristors are the recently discovered fourth fundamental passive circuit element that relates magnetic flux linkage and charge. Unlike the three established fundamental circuit elements, namely the capacitor, inductor, and resistor, the memristor is non-linear. The plasmodium of Physarum polycephalum is an amorphous unicellular organism that has been discovered to exhibit memristive qualities. We confirm findings that the protoplasmic tube of Physarum polycephalum exhibits memristive properties. We conduct a study that investigates how the memristive qualities of the organism may be used to generate musical responses to seed material. Following on, we briefly present an artefact of our research that takes the form of a piece of music composed for live performance. In the final section, we discuss our future work. Here we offer an insight as to how we plan on expanding the usability of Physarum-based memristors by stabilising the component and overcoming some of the constraints we present within this text.


Voltage Range Physarum Polycephalum Pinch Point Computer Music Memristive System 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Edward Braund
    • 1
  • Raymond Sparrow
    • 1
  • Eduardo Miranda
    • 1
  1. 1.Interdisciplinary Centre for Computer Music Research (ICCMR)Plymouth UniversityPlymouthUK

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