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Re: [abcusers] Re: ABC on the web

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  • Phil Taylor
    ... I think the problem is that many of the people who were actively participating in its development dropped out when the abc users list was moved to Yahoo.
    Message 1 of 19 , Oct 29, 2006
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      On 29 Oct 2006, at 14:41, <dglenn@...> wrote:
      >
      > Here's my question about the proposed 2.0 standard: I haven't
      > noticed any changes to it since I found it, though I haven't
      > been saving copies to my hard disk to diff against the current
      > web page. Is it still evolving, or has it actually been as
      > static as it seems to me? Neither have I seen any change in
      > its status, though more and more parts of it get supported by
      > the ABC programs I see. _Is_it_ atill being tweaked, discussed,
      > and argued about, and is there any progress toward (or even an
      > established procedure for) changing it from 'proposed' to
      > 'official', or has it become a _de_facto_ standard and its
      > official status more or less ignored/forgotten?

      I think the problem is that many of the people who were actively
      participating in its development dropped out when the abc users list
      was moved to Yahoo. Since then, almost everything posted here has been
      "How do I get abcm2ps to do this...".

      >
      > Where would (or do, or should) the arguments about making it
      > official be taking place? (My first guess, at least before
      > I signed up, was either here or on the mailing list I saw
      > listed on a couple of web sites that has a broken registration
      > script (the maintainer sends a "let this person join" message
      > that never gets to the list-management software and has the
      > headers munged badly enough that I've never managed to contact
      > a human to point out the problem, so I've no idea what goes on
      > in that mailing list).)
      >
      > I've got a couple of ideas for features that would make my life
      > a little easier -- do I propose them for 2.0 (and where do I
      > send them?) or is 2.0 pretty much done and I should make my
      > suggestions for 2.1 if the next update is ever deemed needed?

      Here's the place. abc 2.0 is still draft and can still be changed.
      Note though, that it has become a very complex standard, and I don't
      think there are any programs which support the whole of it.

      Phil Taylor
    • Phil Taylor
      ... abc has long had its own IANA-registered MIME type: text/vnd.abc if I remember correctly. Quite a few websites still serve it as text/plain though. Phil
      Message 2 of 19 , Oct 29, 2006
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        On 29 Oct 2006, at 15:10, <dglenn@...> wrote:

        > I did see a discussion someplace -- more of a reference to the
        > existence elsewhere of a discussion -- of getting ABC registered
        > as a MIME type. That's relevant to the plugin issue, right?
        > What's the status of that?

        abc has long had its own IANA-registered MIME type: text/vnd.abc if I
        remember correctly. Quite a few websites still serve it as text/plain
        though.

        Phil Taylor
      • Richard Walker
        Rather than an all-or-nothing (or status quo) standard perhaps the abc standard could be a listing of approved features. It would start with those features
        Message 3 of 19 , Oct 29, 2006
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          Rather than an all-or-nothing (or status quo) "standard" perhaps
          the abc standard could be a listing of approved features.  It would
          start with those features that have already been approved.  Any
          additional features could be approved one at a time.  If a programmer
          wants an approved feature, the basics about how to set it up have
          already been approved.  If a programmer doesn't want a feature,
          simply leave it out.  It might be easier to get a single additional
          feature discussed and approved than an entire new standard with
          many new features at once.

          Whether a good or bad idea, what is the mechanics for advancing
          from one standard to the next higher standard?  Is there an abc
          committee that votes?  Just wondering.  Without some established
          mechanics, I don't see either new features or a new standard being
          adopted ... only discussed.

          ----- Original Message ----
          From: Phil Taylor <aar09@...>

          Here's the place. abc 2.0 is still draft and can still be changed.
          Note though, that it has become a very complex standard, and I don't
          think there are any programs which support the whole of it.



        • Simon Plantinga
          ... After thinking about this for a while I m wondering if ABC really is the obvious choice. First of all why do we need it? In most cases it s much easier to
          Message 4 of 19 , Oct 30, 2006
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            --- In abcusers@yahoogroups.com, Håkon Wium Lie <howcome@...> wrote:
            > The web needs a musical notation and I think ABC is suitable.

            After thinking about this for a while I'm wondering if ABC really is
            the obvious choice. First of all why do we need it? In most cases it's
            much easier to just use an image of the sheet music. Of course it
            would be nice if we could simply type in the music code into the html
            code, but what are the requirements?
            To me the main advantage of the original ABC is the easy notation of
            melody lines with chord symbols. The multivoice extentions make the
            notation already much more complicated; for complex sheet music there
            might be better alternatives (PMW, Lilypond, etc.). And if we really
            need a music notation for the web I guess we'd like to be able to
            reproduce all kinds of scores. Now that html is moving towards xml
            standards it seems that e.g. the MusicXML standard is a more obvious
            choice.

            Simon
          • Håkon Wium Lie
            ... One use case is Wikipedia. Say you want to document the national anthems of the world. By haveing the musical notation, you can generate and image of the
            Message 5 of 19 , Oct 30, 2006
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              Also sprach Simon Plantinga:

              > --- In abcusers@yahoogroups.com, Håkon Wium Lie <howcome@...> wrote:
              > > The web needs a musical notation and I think ABC is suitable.
              >
              > After thinking about this for a while I'm wondering if ABC really is
              > the obvious choice. First of all why do we need it?

              One use case is Wikipedia. Say you want to document the national
              anthems of the world. By haveing the musical notation, you can
              generate and image of the sheeet music, and play the score on the
              user's computer. You can also have interactive dots indicating
              progress on the sheet music as it is being played. All this is
              possible today in shipping browsers.

              Here's a relevant page on this matter:

              http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/GNU_LilyPond_support

              > In most cases it's much easier to just use an image of the sheet
              > music.

              I don't think it's easier. Images have limitations. For example, the
              resolution is most often unsuitable for printing. If you have the
              musical notation, you can generate a high-quality printout when
              needed.

              > The multivoice extentions make the
              > notation already much more complicated; for complex sheet music there
              > might be better alternatives (PMW, Lilypond, etc.). And if we really
              > need a music notation for the web I guess we'd like to be able to
              > reproduce all kinds of scores. Now that html is moving towards xml
              > standards it seems that e.g. the MusicXML standard is a more obvious
              > choice.

              I'd be interested in seeing a comparison between the different
              languages. For example, what would <insert you favorite country here>'s
              national anthem look like in the different notations?

              -h&kon
              Håkon Wium Lie CTO °þe®ª
              howcome@... http://people.opera.com/howcome
            • Simon Plantinga
              ... ... Ok, I m convinced that it would be useful ;-) ... I remember a comparison between about 10 notation programs on rec.music.compose but it depends
              Message 6 of 19 , Oct 30, 2006
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                --- In abcusers@yahoogroups.com, Håkon Wium Lie <howcome@...> wrote:

                > One use case is Wikipedia.
                <cut>
                > For example, the resolution is most often unsuitable for printing.

                Ok, I'm convinced that it would be useful ;-)

                > I'd be interested in seeing a comparison between the different
                > languages.

                I remember a comparison between about 10 notation programs on
                rec.music.compose but it depends highly on how you use the program.
                For a web standard I guess the most important thing is that all kinds
                of notational stuff is supported. What it looks like will depend on
                the particular browser/plugin/whatever. I really like abc but it just
                doesn't support all of the features of the major notation programs
                like Finale. I think musicxml does support all that and the xml
                structure suits the web more.

                Regarding the plug-in approach: I think e.g. MathML is already
                supported on lots of browsers. And if you don't have the plugin it can
                be installed automatically as soon as you're trying to view a page
                containing the music notation. Personally I have Javascript turned
                off. The main problem however is that you'd have to include lots of
                script code into each page and that the <canvas> isn't supported
                widely yet.

                Discovered that there already is an abc mime type. I think I read
                somewhere how to set up your browser such that abc files are played
                (displayed?) automatically using locally installed software. Forgot
                where and how though...

                Simon
              • Håkon Wium Lie
                ... Right. Do you have a reference to this comparison? ... Historically, the web is based on simplicity rather than completeness. HTML is a simple language
                Message 7 of 19 , Oct 30, 2006
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                  Also sprach Simon Plantinga:

                  > I remember a comparison between about 10 notation programs on
                  > rec.music.compose but it depends highly on how you use the program.

                  Right. Do you have a reference to this comparison?

                  > For a web standard I guess the most important thing is that all kinds
                  > of notational stuff is supported. What it looks like will depend on
                  > the particular browser/plugin/whatever. I really like abc but it just
                  > doesn't support all of the features of the major notation programs
                  > like Finale. I think musicxml does support all that and the xml
                  > structure suits the web more.

                  Historically, the web is based on simplicity rather than completeness.
                  HTML is a simple language which cannot -- on its own -- support
                  advanced features commonly used in desktop publishing. For example,
                  footnotes and multi-column layouts wasn't possible when HTML was
                  introduced. Still, HTML became the document format of the web -- Tex
                  and Word (to pick two possible contenders) didn't.

                  Right now, I think there's an opening for a simple music notation for
                  web use. I'd like to write, say:

                  <music>cde</music>

                  If other languages offer the same kind of simplicity, they should also
                  be considered. However, the simple MusicXML example on [1] scares me.

                  Features can always be added later. Just like CSS recently has added
                  support for footnotes and multi-column layouts.

                  [1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MusicXML
                  [2] http://www.w3.org/TR/2006/WD-css3-gcpm-20060919/
                  [3] http://www.w3.org/TR/2005/WD-css3-multicol-20051215/

                  -h&kon
                  Håkon Wium Lie CTO °þe®ª
                  howcome@... http://people.opera.com/howcome
                • Richard Walker
                  John Chambers has his site set up to produce several formats of abc files. It would seem that a plug-in that would see the abc type and produce whatever is
                  Message 8 of 19 , Oct 30, 2006
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                    John Chambers has his site set up to produce several formats of abc files.  It would seem that a plug-in that would see the "abc" type and produce whatever is configured, similar to his page, would work for the web too.  One user might want to configure the plug in to produce midi sound, another the notation, yet another a chord chart (but that might be going too far).  Most of the work has already been done if this approach would work.  It wouldn't be a far cry to consider the plug-in launching the abc program of choice from the browser.

                    ----- Original Message ----

                     > The web needs a musical notation and I think ABC is suitable.

                    >
                    > After thinking about this for a while I'm wondering if ABC really is
                    > the obvious choice. First of all why do we need it?



                  • Guy Gascoigne - Piggford
                    The thing that abc has that going for it that others didn t seem to have (last time I looked anyway) was a very simple form for tune entry. Simple tunes end
                    Message 9 of 19 , Oct 30, 2006
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                      The thing that abc has that going for it that others didn't seem to have
                      (last time I looked anyway) was a very simple form for tune entry.
                      Simple tunes end out being very simple to enter with a text editor. I
                      love xml as a means of transferring data between programs, but I really,
                      really don't like all of the verbiage when it comes to writing it by
                      hand. I've really only compared it with Lilypond, and to be honest when
                      things start getting complicated in abc, they are complicated in
                      Lilypond as well, and wordier and personally, no easier to read.

                      If you are going to provide a GUI for music data entry then the format
                      doesn't matter. If you need to export it then, as long as both sides
                      know the format, again it doesn't matter. If only one side is known,
                      then xml works nicely since it's fairly self descriptive and somewhat
                      easier to write parsers for. If you have to write it my hand, then I
                      still think that abc is the best way to go that I've seen.

                      Guy

                      Simon Plantinga wrote:
                      >
                      > --- In abcusers@yahoogroups.com <mailto:abcusers%40yahoogroups.com>,
                      > Håkon Wium Lie <howcome@...> wrote:
                      > > The web needs a musical notation and I think ABC is suitable.
                      >
                      > After thinking about this for a while I'm wondering if ABC really is
                      > the obvious choice. First of all why do we need it? In most cases it's
                      > much easier to just use an image of the sheet music. Of course it
                      > would be nice if we could simply type in the music code into the html
                      > code, but what are the requirements?
                      > To me the main advantage of the original ABC is the easy notation of
                      > melody lines with chord symbols. The multivoice extentions make the
                      > notation already much more complicated; for complex sheet music there
                      > might be better alternatives (PMW, Lilypond, etc.). And if we really
                      > need a music notation for the web I guess we'd like to be able to
                      > reproduce all kinds of scores. Now that html is moving towards xml
                      > standards it seems that e.g. the MusicXML standard is a more obvious
                      > choice.
                      >
                      > Simon
                      >
                      >
                      --
                      Guy Gascoigne-Piggford
                      www.wyrdrune.com
                    • Piotr Wieczorek
                      ... Panorama Internetu - prognoza pogody, poczta e-mail z największym załącznikiem, SMS, wyszukiwarki: Gooru, Anonser, serwisy: randki, ogłoszenia,
                      Message 10 of 19 , Oct 30, 2006
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                        Håkon Wium Lie napisał(a):
                        >
                        > Also sprach Simon Plantinga:
                        >
                        > > I remember a comparison between about 10 notation programs on
                        > > rec.music.compose but it depends highly on how you use the program.
                        >
                        > Right. Do you have a reference to this comparison?
                        >
                        > Perhaps You were looking for:
                        > http://groups.google.pl/group/rec.music.classical.guitar/browse_thread/thread/43c1de8a5897e462/eaaab91a24085c08?#eaaab91a24085c08
                        > or rather something with shorter url :)

                        ---------------------
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                      • Simon Plantinga
                        ... I agree that abc is the easiest notation to type by hand, and I d love to have some kind of tag where you could just include abc code. It s just
                        Message 11 of 19 , Oct 31, 2006
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                          --- In abcusers@yahoogroups.com, Guy Gascoigne - Piggford <guy@...> wrote:
                          > If you have to write it my hand, then I
                          > still think that abc is the best way to go that I've seen.

                          I agree that abc is the easiest notation to type by hand, and I'd love
                          to have some kind of <music> tag where you could just include abc
                          code. It's just that I don't think abc is structured enough to make it
                          into a web standard that would be supported by all browsers. Of course
                          you could use javascript with the <canvas> tag, but you don't need a
                          music standard for that.
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