A new product out of Microsoft Research, Songsmith, offers the ability for aspiring singers to have a computer generate musical accompaniments to make their performance a little more more complete. Instead of using the application to launch their singing careers, a number of YouTube contributors have found a new use for MSRs new app. Taking the vocal track from a classic song (The Police - Roxanne for example) and having Songsmith create a musical track for it. Probably not what the creators had intended, the application has created a number of hilarious versions of some of our favorite songs (the aforementioned Roxanne to a groovy reggae beat perhaps). If you haven't seen these yet, follow the Telegraph UK link, they have a list of some of the more hilarious versions.
The only gripe I have with the Telegraph UK story is their interpretation that the application is "Flawed" because the music doesn't even remotely match up to the style of the song. What they don't realize, because they didn't do their homework on the application, is that the USER selects the type of music to put behind the vocals. The app is not picking these hilarious renditions, rather the user is asking to application to pair together the two things. In actuality, if you listen to the songs, I am pretty impressed how well the app matches the vocals to the new style. The tempo, beat and pacing are all good. If the app didn't work, these renditions would not be nearly as funny, as they wouldn't want.
This is not a FAIL for the application it's a WIN. The users of Songsmith are using the app to create new and creative content. Though clearly this is not what the app was intended for, its just another great example of our users taking our technology and doing awesome (even though unexpected) things with it.