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Dubai Gets World’s First AI-Composed City Anthem

‘Ode to Dubai’, world’s first city-themed song composed by a non-human, will be unveiled at opening of Future Technology Week tomorrow

‘Ode to Dubai’ – the world’s first AI-composed song dedicated to a city – will debut tomorrow (May 1).The song will be unveiled at the Gulf Information Security Expo & Conference (GISEC) and Internet of Things Expo (IoTX), which will open at the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) as a part of Future Technology Week.

A collaboration between the show organisers, Dubai World Trade Centre(DWTC) and AIVA Technologies, a leading European Artificial Intelligence (AI) music composition startup, ‘Ode to Dubai’ has been created using Artificial Intelligence Virtual Artist (AIVA), which composes original classical scores for film, advertising, and gaming soundtracks. The ground-breaking song was composed based on the algorithms of 30,000 symphonic music scores from history’s greatest composers including Mozart, Beethoven, and Bach.

“Ode to Dubai may well usher in the real ‘Roll Over Beethoven’ era,” said Trixie LohMirmand, Senior Vice President, Events and Exhibitions, DWTC. “The anthem’s premier underscores Dubai’s leadership role in the promotion and development new technologies such as AI and the ability of GISEC and IoTX to explore the immense possibilities of new trends.”

AIVA’s CEO, Pierre Barreau, a computer scientist, award-nominated film director and registered composer, will make a keynote speech at the event following the launch of ‘Ode to Dubai’ tomorrow, to discuss whether AIVA is “the greatest composer of all time.” Barreau will challenge the long-held notion that as music was understood to involve emotional expression it could only be composed by humans.

“Sheet music and notes themselves don’t contain emotions; they’re just a discrete representation of what a musician should play with their instrument,” he argues. “The emotions are actually created in our brains when we hear the music being performed, and it is our personal interpretation that associates the sound we hear to emotions and experiences. That is why two different persons hearing the same music might feel different things and that is why AI-composed music can make people feel something: because the emotions are not in the score. They are created in our brains.”

The premiere of ‘Ode to Dubai’ will set the tone for this year’s co-located GISEC and IoTX, which are open to the public for the first time, promise to be the most exciting to date, say organisers. Future Technology Week will feature more than 120 cybersecurity and technology exhibitors from 80-plus countries showcase the latest products and services to meet growing demand for critical online security and blockchain solutions. More than 7,500 infosec professionals will gather to network, knowledge share and trade, while 60-plus experts will address over 100 talks on everything from the future of Artificial Intelligence to national cybersecurity agendas, and smart city implementation

“Future Technology Week will shape the region’s future technology agenda. From a world record breaking jet pack demonstration at the opening ceremony to the latest cybersecurity solutions for the full gamut of industries, this is a must-attend event for anyone connected with information security,” added LohMirmand. “The technologies on display impact the day-to-day-living of us all and we want to enable anyone with an interest in cybersecurity and IoT to gain a deeper understanding of challenges and opportunities facing the region as it continues to embrace the digital era.”

Future Technology Week, is supported by Dubai Electronic Security Center, Dubai Police and Smart Dubai. GISEC will highlight the importance of robust information security frameworks by addressing challenges on global cybersecurity vulnerabilities and threats against governments, industries, and organisations across the region. This year FTW is also co-located with the inaugural Future Blockchain Summit – the largest blockchain event in the world.

Among the key sponsors of the exhibition are DESC, Spire Solutions, HP, Etisalat Digital, IBM, Recorded Future, GBM, Carbon Black, Cisco, and Microsoft. Powered by GITEX TECHNOLOGY WEEK, the region’s leading Information and Communications Technology (ICT) event, FTW 2018 is open to tech enthusiasts, innovators, IT professional and the security and intelligence community, including government departments, business and enterprise. For more information on tickets and packages, please visit

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Chris Fernando

Chris N. Fernando is an experienced media professional with over two decades of journalistic experience. He is the Editor of Arabian Reseller magazine, the authoritative guide to the regional IT industry. Follow him on Twitter (@chris508) and Instagram (@chris2508).

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