Why "Daisy" in 2001: A Space Odyssey?

Why did the HAL 9000 computer sing "Daisy Bell" in the 1968 science fiction film 2001: A Space Odyssey, written by Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke?

Maybe this video clip, taken from a documentary where Arthur C. Clarke is visiting Bell Labs back in the early 60s, will give you an answer to that question.

Link [YouTube] - via Fanboy

Newest 5
Newest 5 Comments

The voice synthesis part seems to be in its entirety on the record Album "First Philadelphia Computer Music Festival" published by Creative Computing in 1979. It also includes a really nice computer generated Toccata. Hey it's on-line here:


The last track is the one.

make sure to check out:
J.S. Bach/Toccata & Fugue in d Minor
J.S. Bach/Suite for Orchestra #2 in b minor (excerpt)
Johann Wanhal/Rondo from Sonata in B flat for Clarinet and Piano
Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
I heard the same recording around 1965-6, when my father was doing his doctoral research on computer voice recognition at Case Institute (now Case/Western) in Cleveland. At the time, the 'Daisy-voice' was astounding quality for a computer; my Dad's "advanced" setup could only generate and recognize the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4 -- so maybe it could sing that Feist song from a couple years ago...
Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
I remember hearing this exact rendition in the mid 60s at a science museum in Ohio. It was right next to the working traffic light mock-up.
Cheap thrills for a ten year old.
Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
Commenting is closed.

Email This Post to a Friend
"Why "Daisy" in 2001: A Space Odyssey?"

Separate multiple emails with a comma. Limit 5.


Success! Your email has been sent!

close window

This website uses cookies.

This website uses cookies to improve user experience. By using this website you consent to all cookies in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

I agree
Learn More