This very unique machine is regarded by some as the first digital musical instrument. Designed by Edward Fredkin and Marvin Minsky at MIT, the Muse is an algorithmic music generator: it uses digital logic circuits to produce a sequence of notes based on the settings of various parameters.
Since the Muse was designed as a composition tool, not a synthesizer, there is no control over the timbre of the sound; rather, the front panel controls affect the melodies that are generated.
The four small sliders in the lower-left control Volume, Tempo, Pitch, and Fine Pitch. The switches to either side are used to start and stop the sequence, or to step through it note-by-note.
Of the eight larger sliders on the right, four control the musical intervals used (labeled A, B, C, and D), and four control the theme (labeled W, X, Y, and Z). A rest can be substituted for the lowest note by flipping a toggle switch. The exact logic behind the composition engine is rather technical, and not exactly intuitive.
The tempo clock can be slaved to that of another Muse, allowing for multi-part compositions.
It is not known exactly how many Muses were made, but they are very rare, and were not available in stores.
[written by Greenie. information from Paul Geffen's website. Paul has also created a Muse Simulator for Windows.]