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VARIATIONS A Digital Music Library System at Indiana University Jon W. Dunn Constance A. Mayer

VARIATIONS: Introduction: 

VARIATIONS: Introduction Digital library of music sound recordings Developed in conjunction with design of a new physical music library facility; access currently limited to that facility Used daily by large student population New way of providing access to a basic music library function (listening reserves) Online since 1996

Outline of talk: 

Outline of talk Background Access scenarios Technical implementation User experiences Conclusions, future work


Context Other audio-based music library efforts JUKEBOX (EC), PATRON (Surrey, UK) E-Reserves: Berkeley, Wisconsin, Columbia, UCSD, Virginia, ... Other music library projects Sheet music: Johns Hopkins, Duke, LC, Berkeley, UNC-CH Encoding: CCARH - Stanford Notation search/analysis: NZDL, HUMDRUM, ...


Context Indiana University School of Music Largest in US: 1600 students, 140 faculty strong academic and performance programs Cook Music Library Collection in top 5 in US 320,000 cataloged print items 130,000 cataloged sound recordings Very high usage, circulation


Background Burroughs and Fenske, 1990 VARIATIONS Name Theme and Variations Variety of information formats for music Networked access for the music student or scholar to sound recordings, scores, textual materials, video recordings

Focus on audio: 

Focus on audio High demand portion of collection Circulation of over 5500/month from closed stacks Fragile formats Lack of previous work; uniqueness

Focus on audio reserves: 

Focus on audio reserves Half of sound recording use from reserves Problems with existing practices Cassette tape dubs, analog distribution systems Concentrated use of a few items at any given time Pilot online in April 1996, more in Fall Currently: 5500 titles, 6600 hours of audio Opera, songs, instrumental music, jazz, rock, world music

Access scenarios: 

Access scenarios Course reserve Catalog



Why use existing catalog?: 

Why use existing catalog? Physical items already MARC-cataloged in NOTIS online catalog system Users familiar with search strategies Search method independent of whether item is available physically or electronically

Disadvantages of using catalog: 

Disadvantages of using catalog Varying levels of detail in individual records; arrangement of information sometimes confusing Search strategies often confusing to the novice Lack of functionality in Web/Z39.50 interface in NOTIS

Technical implementation: 

Technical implementation Strategies Integrate rather than develop Use off-the-shelf hardware and software Sustainability Single technology vendor for emerging technologies (IBM)

Audio capture: 

Audio capture Performed in-house Variety of source formats LP, reel-to-reel, cassette, DAT, CD Hardware: PC, sound card, CD-ROM drive Software: Sound Forge, Disc-to-Disk Format: WAV, 44.1 kHz 16-bit stereo Track timings and names recorded by technician


Processing CD-quality WAV files compressed to MPEG-1 layer 2 (near CD-quality) 1.4 Mbps  384 kbps Track timing information stored in “metadata file”

Information architecture: 

Information architecture


Metadata Descriptive MARC record (composer, title, performer, subject headings, …) Structural Metadata file (track names and timings) Administrative Metadata file (date digitized, file format, equipment used, copyright notice, …)

MARC Record: 

MARC Record BM FMT M RT j BL m T/C DT 01/28/91 R/DT 10/08/98 STAT nm E/L DCF a D/S D SRC d PLACE nyu LANG MOD T/AUD REPRO D/CODE p DT/1 1987 DT/2 1986 F/COMP mu SCORE n A/MAT ehi L/TEXT 007 GMD s SMD d O/R ? SP f SND s GRV n DIM g WID n TAPE n TYPE m MAT l CUT n R/CH e C/ST d 024/1:1 : |a 7559791442 028/1:03: |a 79144-2 |b Elektra Nonesuch 028/2:00: |a 9 79144-2 |b Elektra Nonesuch 033/1:0 : |a 198611-- |b 4364 |c S5 035/1: : |a (OCoLC)ocm19236651 040: : |a YUU |c YUU |d CPL |d OCL |d IUL 045:1 : |b d1985 |b d1973 |b d19800103 047: : |a df |a hy 048/1: : |a oa 099/1: : |a CD |a .A214 |a Ge 100:10: |a Adams, John, |d 1947- 240:10: |a Orchestra music. |k Selections 245:14: |a The Chairman dances : |b foxtrot for orchestra ; Christian zeal and activity ; Two fanfares for orchestra ; Common tones in simple time |h <sound recording> / |c John Adams. 260:0 : |a New York, N.Y. : |b Elektra Nonesuch, |c p1987. 300/1: : |a 1 sound disc : |b digital ; |c 4 3/4 in. 306: : |a 001227 |a 001000 |a 000411 |a 000413 |a 002037 500/1: : |a Elektra Nonesuch: 79144-2 (on container: 9 79144-2). 500/2: : |a The 2nd work based on the hymn Onward Christian soldiers.

MARC Record: 

MARC Record 511/3:0 : |a San Francisco Symphony ; Edo de Waart, conductor. 518/4: : |a Recorded Nov. 1986, at Davies Symphony Hall, San Francisco. 500/5: : |a Compact disc. 500/6: : |a Durations: 12:27; 10:00; 4:11; 4:13; 20:37. 500/7: : |a Program notes by Michael Steinberg (<8> p.) inserted in container. 505/8:2 : |a Two fanfares for orchestra. Tromba lontana ; Short ride in a fast machine. 650/1: 0: |a Orchestral music. 600/2:10: |a Mao, Tse-tung, |d 1893-1976 |x Songs and music. 650/3: 0: |a Fox trots. 650/4: 0: |a Hymns |x Instrumental settings. 650/5: 0: |a Fanfares. 650/6: 0: |a Dance orchestra music. 700/1:10: |a Waart, Edo de. |4 cnd 700/2:12: |a Adams, John, |d 1947- |t Chairman dances. 700/3:12: |a Adams, John, |d 1947- |t American standard. |p Christian zeal and activity. 700/4:12: |a Adams, John, |d 1947- |t Tromba lontana. 700/5:12: |a Adams, John, |d 1947- |t Short ride in a fast machine. 710/7:20: |a San Francisco Symphony Orchestra. |4 prf 740/8:01: |a Christian zeal and activity. 740/9:01: |a Common tones in simple time. 740/10:01: |a Tromba lontana. 740/11:01: |a Short ride in a fast machine. 856/1:7 : |u |2 http

Metadata file: 

Metadata file # ABE7278A CWB 1-12-95 Author=Adams, John, 1947- Title=<Orchestra music. Selections> Equipment=D2D MediaType=Audio [Track 1] TrackTitle=Adams, The Chairman Dances (Foxtrot for Orchestra) Offset=0 [Track 2] TrackTitle=Adams, Christian Zeal and Activity Offset=750774 [Track 3] WorkTitle=Adams, Two Fanfares for Orchestra TrackTitle=Tromba lontana Offset=1362601 [Track 4] TrackTitle=Short Ride in a Fast Machine Offset=1619040 ...

Content storage: 

Content storage Two levels: Archive server IBM RS/6000 server, 3494 automated tape library, two 3590 drives (5 TB capacity) IBM ADSM storage management software Playback server IBM RS/6000 server, 130GB disk Multimedia Server for AIX (initially): NFS IBM VideoCharger (now): RTP/RTSP streaming


VideoCharger Playback server Player Web server Client Browser Content access


Archive server (ADSM) VRS VideoCharger Playback server Player Web server Client Browser Content access


Performance May 1, 1998 - May 1, 1999: Playback server cache hit rate: 83% Mean time for retrieval of file from archive: 3 minutes


Client Hardware Pentium PC, sound card (ideally a good one!) ATM or Switched Ethernet Software Standard web browser MPEG decoder (e.g. MS DirectShow) VARIATIONS Player helper application Visual C++, VideoCharger or QuickTime 4 API for streaming access

User reaction: 

User reaction Usage statistics Feedback via web form, informal comments by students and faculty and observations by library staff

Usage statistics: 

Usage statistics

Usage statistics: 

Usage statistics

Usage statistics: 

Usage statistics Average use per day: ~400 player launches, over 6000/day during exams


Feedback Most common: problem reports on specific files or computers Desire for expanded access

Future work: 

Future work Expand data formats: Liner note images, score images, score notation files, MIDI files, video Score image pilot currently in progress Integration of content-based search tools Standards for music metadata Access to content by applications

Future work: 

Future work Expand access Other locations on campus faculty offices, computer labs, dorm rooms, etc. Off-campus Other institutions - Internet2 Resource sharing, distributed collections, ILL

Future work: 

Future work Intellectual property Fair use and other copyright exceptions Licensing Complexity of music copyright Multiple rights holders and collectives Technical facilities for complying with exceptions or license terms

More information: 

More information VARIATIONS home page E-mail: Jon Dunn: Connie Mayer:

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