IMMP report

 Submitted by Rashidah Z. Hakeem

Wednesday, February 7, 2001

1.  MARC

·        California Sheet Music Project


The California Sheet Music Project is a multimedia World Wide Web presentation of some 2,000 pieces of sheet music published in California between 1852 and 1900, together with related materials such as programs, songsheets, advertisements, and photographs. Scanned color images of full text of the entire corpus in a Web environment encourages browsing and comparison and allows printing for study and performance free of copyright restraints.


Background Documentation

Equipment used for the project included a tabloid-size scanner, large enough for sheet music, and 9 gigabytes of disk storage for the laptop to store scanned image files to carry back to the UCBerkeley campus for transfer to the UNIX web server.


Personnel included Principal Investigator (project designer and content manager); Bibliographic Consultants (music catalogers); and information professionals for programming and scanning.  A total of eleven California libraries, archives, and museums participated in the project with funding and guidelines provided through the California State Library.

Bibliographic Documentation


Full MARC cataloging (through existing catalogue systems available in the UC Berkeley Library, either on-site or from digitized images) allows searching by the myriad names associated with the music as well as subject headings enriched for coverage of California culture.

Information Retrieval

The Cheshire II project is developing a next-generation online catalog and full-text information retrieval system using advanced IR techniques. It represents a significant advance over the simple left-to-right matching of subject headings used in first generation online catalogs, and the Boolean keyword matching used in second generation online catalogs. The Cheshire II system was designed to improve subject searching performance; to support networked access to global information resources using standardized information retrieval protocols; to overcome search failure and information overload for topical searching in online catalogs, and to provide a bridge between the purely bibliographic realm of previous generations of online catalogs and the rapidly expanding realm of full-text and multimedia information resources. The system incorporates a client/server architecture with implementations of current information retrieval standards including Z39.50 and SGML. This system is being deployed in a working library environment and its use and acceptance by local library patrons and remote network users is being evaluated.


SGML translation will allow web searching on all fields with links for display of images of covers and music, theaters and performers.


·        Indiana University VARIATIONS Project

 MARC, administrative metadata


VARIATIONS is a digital library project which provides access to over 5000 titles of near CD-quality digital audio to users at computer workstations in the Cook Music Library at Indiana University Bloomington. VARIATIONS serves both as a useful system for the faculty and students of the IU School of Music and a testbed for multimedia digital libraries at Indiana University.

Background Documentation

The VARIATIONS Project is best known for the distribution of high-quality digital audio from servers and storage systems having some special characteristics to Intel-based and Macintosh clients. The evolution of this project from its beginnings in the late 1980's to its initial operational state today is inextricably connected with the design and construction of a new School of Music Library at Indiana University and with the opportunities presented by a new design. It also addresses some pedagogical and library preservation problems. This article describes the motivation for the project and its history, its operation and experiences to date, and its future goals. VARIATIONS is a work in progress and represents several partnerships within Indiana University and with IBM. (See complete report at:


Information Retrieval

When a user wants to locate a recording of a particular piece of music, access is provided through IUCAT, Indiana University’s statewide online library catalog system. Almost all recordings, which reside physically in the Music Library, are already represented by standard USMARC bibliographic records in IUCAT. Rather than creating a new database with its own search capabilities, we chose to repurpose this already familiar database. Searches produce a call number which may be used to retrieve the physical recording from the shelf, or a World Wide Web URL for the item if it is available online. (See complete report at:


New Digital Project

Indiana University announced plans Sept. 20, 2000 to create a groundbreaking digital library to support research and education in the field of music.


The Indiana University Digital Music Library project aims to establish a digital music library testbed system containing music in a variety of formats, involving research and development in the areas of system architecture, metadata standards, component-based application architecture, and network services.  Activities will include testing and evaluating commercial technologies, primarily for multimedia and storage management; developing custom software solutions for the needs of the music library community; integrating commercial and custom software products; and testing and evaluating prototype systems for music instruction and library services, locally at Indiana University, and at a number of satellite sites, in the U.S. and overseas.


This system will be used as a foundation for digital library research in the areas of instruction, usability, human-computer interaction, and intellectual property rights. The project will seek to move digital libraries into a new phase beyond creating, organizing and disseminating digital objects to the immersion of digital content in the education and research processes.


The DML will provide access to a collection of music in several formats from a range of musical styles and types. The collection will include sound recordings of musical performances; images of published scores; encoded score notation files; MIDI format files for audio playback; historical, biographical, and critical essays; and active links that connect a musical work in one format to a representation in a different format.


Background Documentation

Some of the research questions will focus on the needs and expectations of users; optimal design for usability; and the protection of intellectual property rights in a distributed environment.


Faculty researchers on the project have a variety of academic backgrounds, including computer science, information science, law and music. The project is an outgrowth of IU's Digital Library Program, a university-wide collaboration of the IU Libraries, the Office of the Vice President for Information Technology, and academic researchers led by the School of Library and Information Science.


IU is one of 23 members of the Digital Library Federation, a consortium of research libraries that are transforming themselves and their institutional roles by exploiting network and digital technologies.



Information Retrieval and Access


As a digital library system, the DML will provide integrated multimedia library services including search, retrieval and synchronized playback of recorded music, MIDI files and encoded music notation files; navigation within individual recordings or other music representations; access control, authentication, and metadata for rights management. The DML will also provide a framework for developing software that integrates the collections of the DML into applications for teaching and research in the field of music.



·        Digital Repository for Audio-Visual Preservation



The Library of Congress audio-visual prototyping project is developing a small-scale digital repository for audio and video in 1999-2001. The project is a collaborative activity that will prototype new approaches for the storage and maintenance of digitally reformatted and "born-digital" recorded sound and moving image collections and experiment with new ways to present them to researchers. The project will advance the Library's  understanding of audio-visual digital reformatting, born-digital content, and of the preservation of digital information. The prototype will interoperate with other Library systems, employ an approach for using persistent names, and develop a repository design suitable for the new National Audio-Visual Conservation Center in Culpepper, Virginia, scheduled to open in 2003.


The Prototyping Project is building a prototype, not a final working system. The underlying concepts in the designs are meant to provide a context for the planning process to be undertaken in the Project. The prototype will test potential approaches for the preservation of recorded sound and moving image collections. 


Initially, the project is being carried out by the Motion Picture, Broadcasting, and Recorded Sound Division, supported by the National Digital Library Program and the Preservation Directorate. Other contributing units include Information Technology Services and the Automated Planning and Liaison Office. Planning activities are being supported by the contractor User Technology Associates (UTA) and the subcontractor QB Inc.


Background Documentation


Project Documents

Summary of Phase I and Outline of Plans for Phase II. May 2000


Requirements Document for the Repository


Conceptual Design for the Repository. May 2000




Background documents

Documents 1-6 were part of the Request for Proposal (RFQ) used to select the contractor to support planning, documents 7-11 served as briefing papers after contractor selection, and document 12 was drafted after planning had begun. All documents by Library of Congress staff.

    1.Digital Library Concepts and Terms. July 1999.

     2.The Repository: A System to Manage Digital Content. July 1999.

     3.First and Second Illustrative Diagrams. July 1999.

     4.Preservation Issues. July 1999.

     5.Special Considerations for Digital Audio and Video. July 1999.

     6.The Library of Congress Technical Environment. July 1999.

     7.Extent of Materials to be Treated. October 1999.

     8.Audio Technical Issues October 1999.

     9.Video Technical Issues October 1999.

    10.Persistent Names and Metadata. October 1999.

    11.Access and Delivery Issues October 1999.

    12.Safeguarding Copyrighted and Other Restricted Material April 2000.


Metadata and Related Production Matters

1.  Preliminary LC Audio Visual Technical Metadata. October 1999


2.  Illustrative Presentation of a Recorded Sound Item (Opera Album). October 1999.


3. Illustrative Presentation of a Recorded Sound Item (Popular Music Album). May 2000.


4.  Interim File and Directory Naming System for Recorded Sound Collections. January 2000.


Links to Related Resources


Digital repositories and related digital library issues

Digital objects and related discussion of non-discovery metadata

Non-discovery metadata schemes and encoding

Preservation of digital information (data persistence)

Persistent names and handles

Access management and rights-related metadata

Library of Congress technical infrastructure

Professional digital video formats, compression, and related matters

Selected references on cataloging (bibliographic records) and related matters

Selected references on relevant issues in library and archive preservation
The background information cited in this report represents the major areas addressed by the prototype project.  It is not exhaustive.


American Memory Collections: Original Format: Sound Recordings is one of the first projects of the Prototype. Nineteen collections comprise the sound recordings spanning 1870-1999 and include both music and spoken word. Each collection is described on the search page.


Information Retrieval

Searches that begin from the American Memory Collections search page or from any Collection Finder search page include detailed bibliographic records about most items.  Within individual collections, additional options are available for searching or for browsing lists of names, places, or subjects.  Not included in any American Memory search are the collection Home Pages, background texts and illustrations.

Each of the nineteen collections is keyword searchable and can be browsed by performer, audio title, interviewee, manuscripts, and photographs, depending on the collection's content.

 The search engine used on the American Memory database is InQuery, currently licensed from LeadingSide, Inc. InQuery was originally developed by the Center for Intelligent Information Retrieval based at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

Search engines outside of the Library of Congress may find many American

Memory Home Pages and texts. However, outside search engines cannot usually find the American Memory collection items and their descriptive records.


All Media Guide


Project description

Reputedly the world's largest and most comprehensive entertainment information database for music, videos, DVDs and video games, All Media Guide offers expert reviews, biographies, ratings, images, titles, credits, and other descriptive categories.


Database structure

AMG content is available in the form of relational databases, with each title linked to numerous other records, providing an unmatched depth and breadth of information.  Databases include formal data (titles, tracks, credits, etc.), original editorial content  (reviews, artist biographies, etc.), cover art images and artist bio photos and thousands of descriptive categories for both in-print titles and historical out-of-print titles.


All Media Guide's music database includes popular and classical music. Popular music coverage features albums and performers in genres ranging from pop, rock, country, jazz and blues, to world music, underground rock, Latin and electronic music while classical coverage spans from the medieval to the avant-garde.

Movies and Games databases are also part of this entertainment web site.


Internet retailers are the customers who license the content of All Media Guide to drive online sales of music, videos and video games. The content is seamlessly integrated into their e-commerce and content web sites to provide consumers with entertainment product information.


Information retrieval

From the font page, the music database is searchable by name of artist, performer, album, song, style and label.  A separate button for classical music opens to a keyword searchable dialog box by composer/performer, work title/keyword, or album title. The search interface is selected by radio button in both cases. All movies and all games have comparable dialog boxes.



Navigation bars on the front page of the Allmusic site are labeled

musical maps, musical styles, musical articles and glossary.


Musical maps is a browser interface for several popular music genre. Subjects and topics germane to each genre are listed and cross referenced to additional information within the database(s) and related links at other sites.

The other browsable interfaces are musical styles and musical articles. Musical styles interface is arranged by genre headings with pull down menus listing the various styles within each genre. The information is cross-referenced with artists, performers, and albums.


Similarly constructed is the interface to music articles for each genre.  The text is appropriately hyperlinked to artists, albums or performers. Each article is signed.  Finally, the site has a glossary that can be searched by a keyword dialog box or browsed through a subject directory.




·        HARMONICA (Harmonised Access & Retrieval for Music-Oriented Networked Information Concerted Action)


The HARMONICA project aims to provide a solid strategic framework for networked access to music and related multimedia services, including technologies, existing and emerging standards, exploration of network options and improved interfaces.  This will entail fostering consensus between the broad range of players involved in the field.


The main aim of the HARMONICA initiative is to improve access through libraries to music collections of different types, while taking into account the needs of various groups of users in the evolving world of networked information and multimedia. By bringing together all interested parties through forums, studies and surveys, the Concerted Action aims to achieve consensus on the areas and topics to be developed to the benefit of both users and producers of music.

(The European Commission has been active in the library area for a number of years. The principal context of these activities has been the EU's Third and Fourth Framework Programmes for Research and Technological Development and more specifically, the Telematics Programmes of which Libraries have been a part. While we are still supporting a considerable number of projects under the Fourth Framework Programme, we are already working under the Fifth Framework Programme (1998-2002), where libraries are principally involved in the Multimedia Content and Tools area of the User-friendly Information Society Programme [IST Programme]).


Background documentation


Catalogues and collections (11 documents):

Working from the perspective of the music libraries this workpackage sought to identify the key players, and through these to examine the issues relevant to cataloguing, indexing, archiving, access.


Users needs and interface requirements (9 documents):

Working from the perspective of the library user – what the user expects to be able to get from music libraries and what users state they need an interface to do. Access here means the full range of access to catalogue records, scores (in digital form), MIDI files, recorded music, multimedia and supporting materials. This was carefully linked to the areas covered by the catalogues and collections group.


Networking and digitisation (9 documents):

The focus of the workpackage was to advance the knowledge on means to collect, store and organise music information in digital forms, and make it available for searching, retrieval and processing via communication networks.


Forums (5 documents):

These meetings focused on various aspects of the project with representation by many project participants.


The background information cited in this report represents the major areas addressed by the HARMONICA project.  It is not exhaustive.





Project: PROLIB/HARMONICA 10453 - Commission of the European Communities -LIBRARIES PROGRAMME

Digital music projects open new and exciting opportunities for music libraries and sound archives making their collections more accessible to designated communities as well as to the public. HARMONICA has been initiated in order to advance the knowledge on means to collect, store and organise music and music information in digital formats and make it available for searching, retrieving and processing via communication networks.


Database Structure


For advanced multimedia systems not only a bibliographic description will be stored in the database but also content related information. These database are implemented on top of a standard DBMS but offer several features that will help

content owners in achieving accurate and reliable description. The CARAT system by Siemens realised such multimedia database where the domain can be

specified by the administrator defining a specific wordlist with predefined set of values. This allows the information owner to control the vocabulary being used for these descriptors eliminating problems related to misspelling of descriptors. The database represents domain specific semantics and utilises these to structure the logging information into units having specific semantic meaning. It represents the structure of audio and video objects into a hierarchical structure. It allows the domain manager to define the various levels in the structure and the semantics associated with the levels for this specific domain.



XHTML documents are XML conforming. As such, they are readily viewed, edited, and validated with standard XML tools.



The Virtual Gramophone : Canadian Historical Sound Recordings


Project description

The Virtual Gramophone is devoted to the first half-century of recorded sound in Canada which began with the release of the first 78-rpm discs by the

Berliner company of Montreal.  It will provide researchers and enthusiasts with a comprehensive look at the 78-rpm era in Canada.


Database Structure

Each record in the database provides detailed information about an original recording, such as its title and performer, relevant dates, and information about the label and disc(30 plus searchable database fields). Also accompanying selected entries are links to digitally scanned images of the label, to biographies of Canadian artists featured on the recordings, and to digital audio reproductions of recordings with Canadian content. Each side of each sound recording is treated as a separate entry in the database.



The Virtual Gramophone Web site is divided into six sections: Home, Audio, History, Biographies, Resources and Database. All of these sections may be accessed from the navigation bars located on the top and bottom of each page.


Information Retrieval

Both basic and advanced search functions include keyword, selected field or all fields, phrase and truncation queries.  Advanced search dialog boxes allow Boolean and field limiters queries. Basic and advanced search results are displayed in groups of 10, 20 or 30 items per page.



For items where there are RealAudio files, scanned image files of labels and biographies for the performers, icons will appear at the top and bottom of each item display in addition to the bibliographic information.



The Virtual Gramophone Web site is divided into six sections: Home, Audio, History, Biographies, Resources and Database. All of these sections may be accessed from the navigation bars located on the top and bottom of each page.