For better or worse, technological advances have transformed the music industry, but technology may now help even the tone-deaf to name that tune.




Software developed by Germany’s Fraunhofer Institut, the creators of the MP3 digital audio format that is now ubiquitous across the Internet, have a solution.




It’s called “Query by Humming,” a type of melody recognition software program on display at this week’s Midem music conference in Cannes that identifies a song by title and composer based on a person humming a few bars into a microphone.




Fraunhofer officials a number of firms are working on rival humming-recognition products, and that there have even been calls by some developers to do a “hum-off” competition aiming to settle the score over whose product is best.

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