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Computer Sciences School Student Receives Grant from Amazon

Jessica Keup, doctoral student in computer information systems at NSU’s Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences, recently received the Amazon Web Services research grant to support work on her dissertation.

Keup’s proposed dissertation is entitled “Computer Music Composition using Crowdsourcing and Genetic Algorithms.” The proposed research will look at whether applying crowdsourcing to the human review fitness function of musical genetic algorithms (GA) yields more effective music, as compared to the small groups typically chosen to provide feedback to a compositional interactive GA. This will be accomplished by establishing an interactive GA that creates music in a two-part chorale-like musical style.

Keup will be recruiting crowdsourcing workers by posting tasks on Amazon Mechanical Turk ( They will be ranking music samples to train a genetic algorithm that creates music. The grant from Amazon Web Services covers the costs of hiring more than 5,000 workers on mTurk.