Melodeon.net Forums

Forum and website admin => Wish lists => Topic started by: TomBom on June 17, 2015, 11:43:30 AM

Title: file formats for attachments
Post by: TomBom on June 17, 2015, 11:43:30 AM
I just noticed that nwc is as supported file format on melnet - Noteworthy Composer I believe.
I never saw a post with a noteworthy file. Don't know about security issues, but would it be possible to change that to accepting musescore files?
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Chris Brimley on June 17, 2015, 11:56:31 AM
Or, better still I now believe, to the more general format, MusicXML, which would at a stroke expand opportunities for lots of different stave notation software users? 

(I regret I am not all that hopeful.)
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Theo on June 17, 2015, 01:09:25 PM
I've asked Clive to comment on any security implications.   We also need to see if there is a general feeling that this would be a useful change.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Clive Williams on June 17, 2015, 01:24:12 PM
All I need to know is the file suffix  (:) Assuming it's not a large format likely to use our disk quota, or likely to cause security issues (i.e. .xml/.php/etc) I don't expect it will be an issue.

Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Jack Campin on June 17, 2015, 01:24:46 PM
Is there actually a significant amount of music out there

- in MusicXML (or which could be in MusicXML)
- relevant to this group
- using the features of MusicXML to express something relevant to this group which couldn't be expressed in ABC?

I suspect there isn't, and won't be any time soon.  There isn't a community of users out there sharing MusicXML, despite it being technically possible.  I don't even know of any free public renderer apart from Noteflight.

Formats that I'd see as more urgent to support: MIDI and SVG (both of which are normally used for small files) and Ogg Vorbis (not small, but often smaller than equivalent MP3, which is allowed).  None of those have malware/trojan problems.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Anahata on June 17, 2015, 01:50:48 PM
If you're going to depart from MP3 to an open, patent-free and better alternative, why not go straight past Ogg Vorbis to Opus (http://opus-codec.org/)

Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Mike Hirst on June 17, 2015, 01:55:57 PM
If you're going to depart from MP3 to an open, patent-free and better alternative, why not go straight past Ogg Vorbis to Opus (http://opus-codec.org/)
seconded
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Chris Brimley on June 17, 2015, 02:07:47 PM
Very heartened by your comment, Clive!

For me, this question is one of plurality - does melnet want to allow musicians all over the world who currently use stave notation (and there must be millions of them) the ability to communicate music data directly via melnet?  As I understand it from Wikipedia, MusicXML is a standard format which hundreds of music notation software programs can import to and export from (Sibelius, Finale and MuseScore certainly can for example, and I would imagine ABC software too.)  I believe the file extension is simply .xml.  (I checked Pete Dunk's score 'Le Coucoo' for size: - .mscz filesize 46.1kb, .xml 309kb - Most files used in practice would be a lot smaller, I would imagine.)

Once that authority has been given, I would anticipate that most users of their own favourite software could quickly export to or import from all the formats Jack has mentioned, so that's the one main thing that melnet would need to do to free the whole thing up?

We already know from the Learning thread survey that many people use stave notation software sometimes, at least.  I would have thought that's all we need to know - it's not about the benefits of one platform over another - anyone can then use their favourite (or perhaps I should say the one they happened to have learned) and talk to everybody else directly, provided of course it's one of the several hundred systems mentioned above.

However, my slight worry is that there is actually an elephant in the room - a suspicion that a large number of melnetters reject stave notation and all its trappings, on principle.  If the decision is to be based on such narrow and isolationist views, I would really worry for the future of the melodeon.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Jack Campin on June 17, 2015, 02:14:03 PM
Opus looks good but at the moment I don't have a prayer of doing anything with it!  (I'm not going to stand in the way of anybody who can and wants to use it, though).
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: malcolmbebb on June 17, 2015, 02:16:00 PM
If you're going to depart from MP3 to an open, patent-free and better alternative, why not go straight past Ogg Vorbis to Opus (http://opus-codec.org/)
This feels like a parallel discussion to the last one building up. I suspect for most people, openness, technical superiority etc is less important than ease of access, support, and lots of software that can use it.
For the likes of me, mp3 is pretty much the abc of sound files. Does everything I need, I can play it on anything, not too big.
As before, better options are available for those who need them but mp3 suits the common man.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Jack Campin on June 17, 2015, 02:23:33 PM
Quote
many people use stave notation software sometimes

Yes.  But most of us use ABC to get it, since that give us both the staff notation and a lot of extra capabilities.

Like sharing notation in editable form with blind people.  Are there players for MusicXML that don't require a visual user interface?  Most of Melnet is accessible to the blind at present, ABC quotes and attachments included.  The only way I can find to get from MusicXML to MIDI without using a graphical interface detours through ABC.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: malcolmbebb on June 17, 2015, 02:34:50 PM

However, my slight worry is that there is actually an elephant in the room - a suspicion that a large number of melnetters reject stave notation and all its trappings, on principle.  If the decision is to be based on such narrow and isolationist views, I would really worry for the future of the melodeon.
Can't quite see where this came from, nor am I clear about its scope. Is it aimed at people who solely read directly from abc (quite a small minority, IMO), or those who solely play by ear? (This whole discussion is irrelevant to the latter group, I would have thought.)

 
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Anahata on June 17, 2015, 02:38:36 PM
If you're going to depart from MP3 to an open, patent-free and better alternative, why not go straight past Ogg Vorbis to Opus (http://opus-codec.org/)
This feels like a parallel discussion to the last one building up. I suspect for most people, openness, technical superiority etc is less important than ease of access, support, and lots of software that can use it.

Actually I agree - I'm not going to put up a defence!
I was simply picking up on Jack's suggestion with an even better alternative following the same principles.

There was a time when I was cautious about using MP3 because it was/is so encumbered with patent and royalty issues, but I think its use has become so universal that nobody's going to stop anyone from using it now.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Theo on June 17, 2015, 02:50:11 PM
This is getting very confusing now.  Chris asked a specific question about file formats for music notation.  Unfortunately it's the way with melnet that we've now move onto sound files which really needs to be considered separately.  The current file size limits mean that mo3 sound files are rarely posted.  Instead members post their sound samples on their choice of hosting sites, and then post links here.  That seems to work well and has numerous advantages.

So can we please keep this topic to discussion of file formats for notation, than we have some chance of reaching a consensus.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Anahata on June 17, 2015, 02:54:27 PM
a suspicion that a large number of melnetters reject stave notation and all its trappings, on principle.
Can't quite see where this came from, nor am I clear about its scope.

Me neither. I think (and recent discussions haven't persuaded me otherwise) it's taken for granted by most of us that ABC posted to melnet is done for the purpose of copying and pasting into a text editor or program like ABC Explorer, for displaying as staff notation if you read music or playing though the speakers if you don't. We all know what to do with it and it takes seconds.

And if anyone actually wants to add harmony, chords, bass lines, lyrics, expression marks or whatever, they can, but there's less often the need for that.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Chris Ryall on June 17, 2015, 02:55:01 PM
I've not used musicXML specifically but if its files are to be passed into a musicXML interpretter either as .xml or mxl compressed files, I guess that would check validity (it's all text anyway)

Tossing one of these files directly at a browser would be a strange thing to do -  it might do something if it had a link to a style sheet. You could check no such link … or ensure that it had the correct XSD schema link in there. but that's more work for Clive? The email attachment people don't seem to see XML as dangerous however

I think sound files would bust our bandwidth budget pretty quickly
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Chris Brimley on June 17, 2015, 03:06:51 PM
Malcolm my comment was certainly not against ABC'ers, most of whom it seems translate into staves anyway, nor specifically against either of the two groups you mention.  It is just a feeling from many views I've read over the years on this forum that there are quite a few members who seem in principle opposed to music notation and/or theory of any form, believing it to be academic or unnecessary.  In fact I'm not even against people holding those opinions, provided they don't have the effect of blocking progress for the rest of us (even if they turn out to be in the majority).  That was my worry.  This is all part of the box being treated as a 'proper' musical instrument by other musicians - IMO it already is one, but if we as a group were to reject the use of scores in principle, all our credibility as equal musicians to the players of other instruments would immediately be lost.  This change is an important step for our instrument (reflecting its development over the years), and I think that is perhaps why it has caused such a lot of discussion in one way or other.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Chris Brimley on June 17, 2015, 03:34:51 PM
Quote
We all know what to do with it and it takes seconds.

Anahata, remember that it still doesn't work backwards, though - the big players in the stave notation field, Finale, as far as I can tell Sibelius, (and MuseScore, if you call that a big player) don't export to ABC.  Maybe they should recognise it, but the point is they don't.  I started using MuseScore following recommendations from this forum a few years ago, transferring from Finale, and have certainly not yet regretted it.  Never mind which system may be regarded as ' best' I would rather not have to start from scratch with another system such as ABC.  Many other musicians (both inside and outside this forum) will be familiar with other platforms, and will be in the same boat.  We need to allow engagement with them in principle, I would have thought.  This one change to allow .xml seems to achieve all this at a stroke.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: TomBom on June 17, 2015, 03:47:39 PM
OMG, why did I start this thread ... ?
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Chris Brimley on June 17, 2015, 03:51:10 PM
Because you're a sensible guy.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Anahata on June 17, 2015, 04:32:09 PM

the big players in the stave notation field, Finale, as far as I can tell Sibelius, (and MuseScore, if you call that a big player) don't export to ABC.

They export to MuxsicXML, though, and there is an xml2abc converter (http://wim.vree.org/svgParse/index.html) that will turn into ABC which is then acceptable to everyone here .

Never mind which system may be regarded as ' best' I would rather not have to start from scratch with another system such as ABC.
But you seems to be proposing that, instead, everyone else on Melnet should learn a new system (or acquire conversion software) so you can post MusicXML or Musescore.
If you post in any other format, I'm willing to bet that you'll usefully reach fewer Melnet users than if you used ABC.

To be fair, I don't see why XML formats (preferably compressed to save space, because XML boils down like spinach with ZIP compression) shouldn't actually be allowed here, then we'd see how many people would actually use them.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Chris Ryall on June 17, 2015, 04:34:17 PM
.
Because you're a sensible guy.

    Begging the same question about the rest of us   :o
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Clive Williams on June 17, 2015, 04:44:04 PM
To be fair, I don't see why XML formats (preferably compressed to save space, because XML boils down like spinach with ZIP compression) shouldn't actually be allowed here, then we'd see how many people would actually use them.

XML's banned because it's also used for things like config files, data files, and things that could conceivably alter the function of the site. If you allow download of Music XML, you allow download of XML for any of the other parts of the site, which could conceivably compromise the site by exposing more sensitive parts that could be used for exploits. Worse, by allowing uploads of .xml files, a suitable attack vector allows for system .xml files to be overwritten allowing all manner of happy possibilities. MuseScore .mscx files... fine, Music XML .xml files, nope. Been burned on this on wordpress recently, which was quite unpleasant to sort out.


 
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Chris Brimley on June 17, 2015, 05:50:20 PM
Quote
But you seems to be proposing that, instead, everyone else on Melnet should learn a new system (or acquire conversion software) so you can post MusicXML or Musescore.

Well I was hoping that most ABC users would be able to read XML somehow, as it's a standard.

We seem to be back to square one again (maybe 1.1) now however, following Clive's post.

It's actually small comfort to me that .mscz may now be allowed, because I take your point, Anahata - we still don't have complete cross-transfer, and I had begun to see bigger horizons with XML.

Can I comment on the point that few people would use the facility anyway?:  May well be true, initially at least.  We are looking to future directions here, and towards opening up musical possibilities.  Bigger platforms are always likely in due course to overtake smaller ones, because they have more development resources to hand, and will be likely to offer more features.  The development of melodeons in recent years towards much more complex and varied layouts has undoubtedly expanded musical possibilities, and therefore the need for more complex musical notation systems, particularly in terms of harmonies and accompaniments.  Nobody needs to argue in advance about whether a given piece of software will prevail over its competitors, because that will all come out in the wash, once users have an opportunity to try them all.  I found it useful to change to MuseScore from Finale several years ago because at the time it was more user-friendly, offered better presentational functions, and crashed less.  A particular feature I have found invaluable is the ability to stretch or compress lines so that the repeats come at the end of a line, because that was far easier for me and my band colleagues to use when playing at dances.  Finale used to keep crashing if you tried to do that.  Other band members take my data files and amend them for their own needs.  But that's just our needs.  Others will have very different priorities, and having the foresight to accommodate the ability for future change is I would have the main aim at the moment.  We do need to allow the integration of our systems with the needs and experiences of other musicians, I believe.


 

 
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Theo on June 17, 2015, 06:30:22 PM
Ok if mscx files are safe, how many of us would like them added as an upload able file type?
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Chris Brimley on June 17, 2015, 07:02:50 PM
1 vote from me. (But you may have perhaps guessed that already!)

Incidentally, do you mean .mscx only, or .mscz?  .mscz files are the compressed format which it tends to default to, and I believe .mscx are uncompressed.  They may also be older format files, I'm not sure - they started off calling them .msc, but they found there was a clash with a Microsoft extension format.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Theo on June 17, 2015, 07:05:09 PM
The compressed format would make more sense.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Anahata on June 17, 2015, 07:17:09 PM
Well I was hoping that most ABC users would be able to read XML somehow, as it's a standard.
I'm not sure what you mean by "be able to read" because MusicXML is a far more complex and verbose notation to read directly. If you mean ABC software being able to import it, less likely to happen because ABC inhabits a world of free software where many programs are quite simple and single-purposed. I've already mentioned that a converter exists though.

Quote
A particular feature I have found invaluable is the ability to stretch or compress lines so that the repeats come at the end of a line
I don't know how closely you have looked at ABC, but that is a complete non-issue with most ABC renderers. You put the line breaks where you want them, and unless the result would be hideously squashed, that's where you'll get them, with the the contents of each line automatically spaced to fit the width of the page. You can even tell it (abcm2ps anyway) how much squashing you can tolerate, and whether or not to stretch the last line to full width or finish the last bar in the middle of the page if the alternative would be absurdly stretched.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Chris Ryall on June 17, 2015, 07:36:32 PM
Accept Clive's wisdom on XML, I also failed in the NHS, despite it being the Uk government's preferred vector for info exchange. Shame that this also excludes musicXML
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Howard Jones on June 17, 2015, 07:45:26 PM
Well I was hoping that most ABC users would be able to read XML somehow, as it's a standard.

Yes, ABC users should be able to read XML, and vice versa, albeit with perhaps a bit of tinkering and intermediate format conversions

Quote
We are looking to future directions here, and towards opening up musical possibilities... we do need to allow the integration of our systems with the needs and experiences of other musicians, I believe.

That's a valid point.  However people have a large investment in ABC and it will take a long time for this to be overcome.  For anyone with an interest in folk and traditional music the vast number of tunes available in ABC is a huge incentive to adopt that format rather than others.  Perhaps when ABCs and XMLs can be used seamlessly in any software without any further intervention more people might be tempted to switch.  For the time being, for most of them ABC is fully capable of meeting their needs, and they simply don't need the more advanced features that other software can offer.

ABC may be a niche product (a bit like melodeons then  (:)) but it is a significant niche and I think it is unlikely to be superseded any time soon.  The vast and growing resource of tunes will see to that.  For this particular community it is too useful.  ABC files allow these music to be organised and additional information recorded in ways which are of particular benefit to this genre.  People who have wider interests and who wish to share music with a different community will have different needs and will find different solutions.  There is nothing to prevent either group from using the other format when the need arises, although I agree it would help if this could be more seamless.  However that is a matter for the software developers rather than this forum.

You're also assuming that eventually MusicXML will come to dominate everything, but if there is a security issue with .xml files can you be sure that this format is sustainable in the long term?
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Jack Campin on June 17, 2015, 08:16:26 PM
BarFly has been able to import MusicXML since a few years before its development was stopped. That must make about ten years I've been able to do it, and in all that time nobody's ever pointed me to a single MusicXML file with content I wanted to look at.

Where is there a public archive containing melodeon-playable MusicXML or MuseScore files?
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Chris Brimley on June 17, 2015, 08:20:14 PM
Quote
You're also assuming that eventually MusicXML will come to dominate everything, but if there is a security issue with .xml files can you be sure that this format is sustainable in the long term?

My thoughts too, Howard - and even in the short term?  Having no acceptable standard format is a considerable setback, I imagine.  So whichever way you look at it, we're all left in a bit of a mess, with a large number of competing programs around.  It would be a mammoth task to sort out which ones are acceptable to a forum such as ours, I suppose.  And I imagine it's no 'black and white' matter between different formats, there's an awful lot of unknowns.

Is there possibly an alternative way of looking at this whole issue, using third party caches, a bit like soundcloud or youtube, but with music data?  Everybody could then perhaps just post links.  Do the big music software people offer any such services, do we know?

(Edited - I think Jack's just asked the same question.)
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Theo on June 17, 2015, 08:37:38 PM
This sort of thing?

https://musescore.com/sheetmusic (https://musescore.com/sheetmusic)
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Theo on June 17, 2015, 08:44:52 PM
Added mscz as a permitted file type for attachments.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: GBbox on June 17, 2015, 09:03:24 PM
Amazing! You are all talking about the music xml files as if they were necessarily to be posted to melnet in attachment.

At least those who have opened a music xml file in a brower should have realized that it's plain text. Then you can use with the standard abc past, post, copy and past elsewhere routine.

OK, there is a little (!) difference – an abc file is usually a few lines long, a music xml file can be hundreds if not thousands lines long. This mean that if the limitations for a message to the forum will not be rised from 20.000 to (at least) 50.000 characters, there will be no chance to post the music xml content pasted as text in the messages.

For the record, I've made a test a few months ago. The mxl file I obtained after posting myself the xml text content in a mail displayed correctly once reimported into Harmony Assistant, and the melody displayed correctly in Lime (that doesn't support the chords notation when importing). If you've never heard about Lime, it's not a problem – it's an excellent software if you really wish to graphically tune your score with a dot precision, but probably a niche program. I wouldn't have quoted it, but as someone told about the needs of blind people it's worth a mention that a version of Lime is used by Dancing Dots, a company producing software for blind and visually impaired people.

Also, I posted the text to a friend that uses professionally both Finale and Sibelus, and it posted me back two pdf files showing the conversion was correct (even if Sibelius when loading it said it wasn't a proper  xml file). I also posted a copy to a friend that uses Tabledit – fine for the melody, but there no chord.

I have had some minor problems with the beaming in MuseScore, but I wasn't using version 2.

Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Howard Jones on June 17, 2015, 09:17:44 PM
Is there possibly an alternative way of looking at this whole issue, using third party caches, a bit like soundcloud or youtube, but with music data?  Everybody could then perhaps just post links. 

I'm sure that's possible, but I still don't understand why it is such an issue.  The preferred format on melnet is ABC.  This isn't because of a diktat from on high but because (1) most melodeon players have a folk background and ABC is a natural choice, (2) it is very easy to copy and paste it into a post, and (3) there are good reasons for not permitting some types of attachment, which ABC gets around

Any ABC which is posted on here you should be able to open in Musescore (and many other similar programs).  Similarly, if you wish to post something yourself there are ways of converting MusicXML and MIDI into ABC.  Admittedly this could be made clearer and perhaps we should have a pinned post to explain how to convert between ABC and other formats (in both directions)

Why is this such a problem that we should want to go to the trouble of uploading files to the cloud and creating and copying links to them?

Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: GBbox on June 17, 2015, 10:11:34 PM

I'm sure that's possible, but I still don't understand why it is such an issue.  The preferred format on melnet is ABC.  This isn't because of a diktat from on high but because (1) most melodeon players have a folk background and ABC is a natural choice, (2) it is very easy to copy and paste it into a post, and (3) there are good reasons for not permitting some types of attachment, which ABC gets around


Let me replay to your points starting from the last.

3. As I have shown, the problem to permit attachments doesn't exist. There is only the problem to allow longer messages.

2. If you can copy and past abc, you can copy and past xml, or even midi.  Yes, even midi files can be converted into text, pasted into mails, and then reconverted. I can rember I stepped by chance into a forum that dealt with folk songs and ballads some 15 years ago, and they used this system to exchange the melodies. You'll find that the utilities they used for the conversions are still available, and you can even use them an on line.

1. The abc might be a chance for English native speakers who have a folk background, either they play the melodeon or any other instrument. This is not the case in a number of other countries where English is not the natiove Language. And, even if you can't see them, there are sound reasons for it.

I've joined the melnet communty because of my interest in English music, and I can cope with the use of the abc notation,  but I think everybody could benefit if there were more foreign members available to share their experience here. And to reach this goal, among Others  - I agree with Chis' issue - we should consider the opportunity to broaden the communication as much as we can. Fullstop.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Jack Campin on June 17, 2015, 10:28:29 PM
The developer of the most used ABC renderer is French. A Brazilian is developing ABC to handle microtonal music from the Middle East. It has installed support on a forum run by a native speaker of Croatian. On another forum I read I've seen ABC from native speakers of Chinese, Japanese and Korean. Your idea that there is anything restrictively English about the notation is sheer fantasy.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Anahata on June 17, 2015, 10:40:48 PM
And the author of my favourite ABC Plus manual is Italian...
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Pete Dunk on June 17, 2015, 10:52:41 PM
Why is this such a problem that we should want to go to the trouble of uploading files to the cloud and creating and copying links to them?

Not a problem Howard, a cure to a few ills. I started a thread today in the Tunes forum about an ABC transcription of an 18th century Belgian book. In order share this with everyone I created a PDF from the ABC file, uploaded both the ABC and the PDF to my Box in the cloud and posted links to both files in the thread. Some notation software can import ABC as it is, more software can import a PDF created by another music software package (ie not a scan!) into its' native format, so this served both well.

ABC software will be the loser to other file formats that it can't handle as far is sharing on melnet is concerned, but actually I no longer care because I'm self sufficient in transcription skills and can look after my own appetite for new music from material widely available on the internet.  :||:

I've joined the melnet communty because of my interest in English music, and I can cope with the use of the abc notation,  but I think everybody could benefit if there were more foreign members available to share their experience here. And to reach this goal, among Others  - I agree with Chis' issue - we should consider the opportunity to broaden the communication as much as we can. Fullstop.

Your contribution here and your interest in English (and hopefully other British) music is most welcome and we are keen to learn about your traditional tunes too. Requests to present music in any format will always be listened to and I'm sure if we can do it we will. We're all (or at least mostly) amateurs here and we can only do so much!

And the author of my favourite ABC Plus manual is Italian...

Ah, Guido! I'm not sure Jack is a fan though!
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: GBbox on June 17, 2015, 11:08:26 PM
Can you please tell me how many abc fils of Italian tunes uploaded by italian musicians are currently available on the web?

Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Jack Campin on June 17, 2015, 11:44:49 PM
Not enough.  I have yet to see an Italian tune that would be a problem for ABC.  The uploader of this one seems to be Austrian, dunno who did the transcription:

http://members.yline.com/~zeiler1/abc/czital.abc

You do rather better looking for Chinese music transcribed by a German:

https://github.com/bewest/music21-bewest.clone/blob/master/music21/corpus/essenFolksong/han1.abc
https://github.com/bewest/music21-bewest.clone/blob/master/music21/corpus/essenFolksong/han2.abc

BTW I have a rather large file of jazz leadsheets in ABC which demonstrate how far beyond folk you can go.  But they're all copyright and have never been publicly available.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Chris Brimley on June 17, 2015, 11:53:32 PM
Several comments:

Thanks Theo for the change, and for the info re the MuseScore upload/download facility, which I hadn't noticed.

Re the many comments about different file sizes, something doesn't quite compute for me - it seems to have been the view that there isn't a lot of difference between the output for different systems, so it would follow that some of them must be in very inefficient formats, to need such big files.  Or are there perhaps a lot of other features in these big files that we haven't discussed?

GBbox has asked about numbers of ABC users in Italy.  (Thanks Gianni for your support on the broadening communication issue, btw.)  The comparison may be too obvious to mention, but to give some global context in terms of scorewriting software, I see that Sibelius, the claimed largest, boasts 'hundreds of thousands of users' in '100 countries'.  Its library of purchasable scores runs to 925,000 alone, and there are no doubt also huge numbers of their scores around somewhere on the web, produced by both amateur and professional users.

Howard has mentioned ways of converting MusicXML to ABC, which would presumably therefore allow the conversion of a .mscz file to ABC, and indeed conversion to ABC of any other stave notation software that exports to the standard MusicXML.  Can you point me in the right direction for this, Howard?
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Howard Jones on June 17, 2015, 11:54:49 PM
Pete, your Belgian tune collection is a slightly different situation where it makes sense to save the files elsewhere and create links to them (although I note that some people had trouble with the links, so this isn't a perfect solution).  Pasting the entire file as text would be a bit unwieldy.  However a lot of tune shares are of individual tunes which can very easily be handled within the forum. 

It also illustrates an advantage of ABC, that an entire collection can be contained in a single file.  Unless I have misunderstood, to do this in other formats would require separate files for each tune.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Howard Jones on June 18, 2015, 12:01:07 AM
Chris, EasyABC allows import of of .xml. midi and Noteworthy files.  It doesn't appear to support .mscz directly but using one of these other formats should allow you to convert.  It also has some other nice features, including adding markings from a menu, which you might feel more at home with than direct text entry.

http://www.nilsliberg.se/ksp/easyabc/

Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Anahata on June 18, 2015, 12:04:13 AM
Re storage efficiency: XML formats are very inefficient but compressible, because they typically contain lots of instances of elements with the same name.
ABC is the only one designed for manual input of the code directly, and is therefore very terse.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Chris Brimley on June 18, 2015, 12:10:41 AM
Quote
Unless I have misunderstood, to do this in other formats would require separate files for each tune.

I think there's at least two ways in MuseScore:  you could use page breaks between separate scores, with intermediate text for separate sub-titles.  Or there's an Album function, which I think does it more comprehensively, though I've never used it.

Thanks also Howard for the info on EasyABC, I'll check it out.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Chris Brimley on June 18, 2015, 12:16:32 AM
Quote
XML formats are very inefficient but compressible

Thanks for that - Yes, I note that MuseScore says it can convert to a Compressed MusicXML, but mentions that it is less widely used in other platforms than is Music XML. 

I haven't checked how differently the sizes turn out to be in practice.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: TomBom on June 18, 2015, 12:21:40 AM
Can you please tell me how many abc fils of Italian tunes uploaded by italian musicians are currently available on the web?
The same is true for Austrian, Swiss, Polish, Slovakian, Slovenian, Spanish, German ... tunes.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Jack Campin on June 18, 2015, 12:34:27 AM
I asked what free stuff in MuseScore was out there that a melodeon player might want to use, and Theo found this:

https://musescore.com/sheetmusic

It has no genre filter, and no category for "melodeon" or "diatonic accordion".  So I looked at what they had for bagpipe, figuring that most of that would have to be folk music.  Who knows, maybe they might have something like my transcription of the collected public domain work of GS MacLennan.  There's stacks of free old bagpipe music at http://www.ceolsean.net/ that any interested person could transcribe.

They haven't.  What a pile of dogshit.  There is absolutely NOTHING there that a player of any kind of real bagpipe would want to look at.

So, let's try "accordion".  You get a few real accordion pieces in there, but there is a systematic problem with the site: any piece arranged by a self-indulgent syntho-orchestrator will get all of its MIDI instruments listed in the index - most of the "accordion" entries were never intended to be played by a human accordionist.  ("Bagpipe" has it worse, since the system puts no constraints on playable range).  Is a nine-part arrangement of "Wonderwall" including "choir aahs" likely as real accordion repertoire?  This is one of the few genuine ones:

https://musescore.com/user/26/scores/618

but it uses nothing you couldn't write in ABC, the playback sound is foul, and it seems to be completely random whether the player repeats a section as notated or not.  (It's also been composed on the piano - you don't do parallel-octave bass runs on a Stradella bass).

So, where is all this material Chris want to attach going to come from?  Who's writing it?
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Howard Jones on June 18, 2015, 09:03:06 AM
JC's ABC Tunefinder will search the web for tunes.  Although the default search is "Title", this actually searches all the index fields.  Assuming the transcriber has completed the O: field for geographical origin, or otherwise made a note in an index field, the search should find it.  However this is optional information which often won't be recorded.

Of course this is language-sensitive.  A search on "Italy" turned up 534 matches, but you would also need to search on "Italia" and other non-English alternatives to pick transcriptions by Italians and other nationalities.

http://trillian.mit.edu/~jc/cgi/abc/tunefind
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Chris Ryall on June 18, 2015, 09:15:34 AM
Jack, I'd suggest that melnet might be big enough to develop its own arhive of music. We already have most of tunes of the month in ABC, albeit not all together. Looks that MusicXML-ing of that might be semi-automated. Not my mission in life, but I'm often amazed at what people will do de bono in this respect. Lester has much of the morris tradition covered. We have loads of other specialists here. One of the pleasures of this group is the surprises in thsi respect

Sorry to here about bagpipe music, yes, it is a genre of it's own, but that is Bagsoc business, not ours. As for "accordion" music - is it an entity? I'd say melodeon music is, mainly due to diatonic nature, and push-pull.
Title: Re: file formats for attachments
Post by: Theo on June 18, 2015, 10:05:37 AM
We are well off topic now, and I think the original discussion has reached some kind of conclusion