At his SXSW 2018 talk “When AI, Beatboxing and Mixed Reality Collide”, Mill ECD Rama Allen sought to answer the question: is it possible for humans to collaborate artistically with an artificial intelligence?


Historically, artists have been defined by the tools available to make their work – sculptors, painters, and music instrumentalists. Mill X looked to turn that idea on its head, by using AI to create art in tandem with humans.


The world’s first-ever beatboxing AI.


The Mill


Concept / Direction / Creative Coding / Software Development

To explore human collaboration with machines and what this could look like in the future, we created The Reeplicator, a live beatboxing AI that has a vocal sample bank it can use to collaborate in real-time with an artist.

In this case, it was with London-born world beatboxing champion Reeps One on the SXSW stage. The Reeplicator improvised in a real-time duet and a call and response battle, giving Reeps a unique “other” that he sees as an extension of himself.

Through The Reeplicator, we have pioneered a new kind of artistic collaboration and feedback loop powered not by artificial intelligence, but “augmented intelligence”. With this, an artist no longer wields their tool, but creates with it.