Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Rich Musical Pickings With Easier Access To Archives

Date:
April 30, 2009
Source:
ICT Results
Summary:
Digital sound archives offer enormously rich resources but accessing them is currently difficult, and often arbitrary. European researchers believe they have developed a solution, one that offers compelling new functions to digital sound archive access.

Easaier -- Enabling Access to Sound Archives through Integration, Enrichment and Retrieval -- features system functions that are all combined within in a single user-configurable interface that allows users to access archives in a variety of useful ways.
Credit: Image courtesy of ICT Results

Digital sound archives offer enormously rich resources but accessing them is currently difficult, and often arbitrary. European researchers believe they have developed a solution, one that offers compelling new functions to digital sound archive access.

Digital sound archives offer enormously rich resources, but suffer from access problems. Sound material is often held separately from other materials and media. Worse, it can be very difficult to listen to or to browse the content, and there is no way to search it.

Existing solutions, which attempt to deal with these problems, tend to be library or content specific, of limited functionality, or difficult to use.

Music archives made Easaier

This is an issue that the EU-funded Easaier project sought to solve. Easaier stands for Enabling Access to Sound Archives through Integration, Enrichment and Retrieval, and the project achieved just that by developing innovative new methods for accessing sound archives.

The system functions are all combined within in a single user-configurable interface that allows users to access archives in a variety of useful ways.

For example, the system responds to the needs of amateurs and professionals by providing new ways to interact with, or retrieve, content through a simple web-client access point that works in any web browser, or from an advanced user access system developed in a stand-alone application.

Metadata is used extensively in both applications, and can provide a wide range of information to users, including tempo, key and other technical and background information. To achieve this, Easaier created a music ontology for semantic metadata, which will have an impact well beyond the project’s core aim.

Taking music further

But the system functions go further. “Of course, nobody just wants to find a piece of music. They want to play around with it, too, so we developed a series of tools that allow users to manipulate the sounds in a wide variety of useful ways,” explains Joshua Reiss, coordinator of the Easaier project.

The Easaier system, for example, will allow students to slow down playback without altering the pitch. It will also allow them to separate specific instruments from a piece, and they can play back the piece an octave higher or lower, to hear how that affects it.

What’s more, there are tools that can be used with speech, as well as a novel presentation of multimedia material, such as sound-source separation, equalisation and noise-reduction algorithms, and methods to synchronise video and audio streams in real time.

Crucial issue: what next?

Easaier has generated a lot of interest among music archives. “We have an agreement in principle with the British Library, we are currently working on how they want to implement the system for their archive,” explains Reiss.

The Irish Pipers Archive and the Irish Traditional Music archive are also interested in the system and have been testing and evaluating it. But that is only the beginning. A lot of the tools and technologies used in Easaier are currently at work in National and European projects. “They are being used for other projects and are receiving further development,” Reiss reveals.

Some of the partners are commercialising or licensing their work to other companies. NICE is incorporating speech tools it developed in Easaier into its call centre management software, and the Dublin Institute of Technology has licensed its source separation tools to Sony Music.

In all, almost ten patents were taken out for various elements of the project, and Memnon, one of Europe’s main players for audio archiving systems, has shown considerable interest in the project, while a start up company in the USA, called Platinum Blue, has licensed technology developed in part within the project.

“We are interested in any other ways the system could be commercialised or adapted to other products, too,” notes Reiss.

What ever happens, it will mean music archiving, retrieval and manipulation will be made a lot easier.

The Easaier project received funding from the ICT strand of the Sixth Framework Programme for research.

More information is available at: http://easaier.org/


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by ICT Results. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

ICT Results. "Rich Musical Pickings With Easier Access To Archives." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 April 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090422121947.htm>.
ICT Results. (2009, April 30). Rich Musical Pickings With Easier Access To Archives. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090422121947.htm
ICT Results. "Rich Musical Pickings With Easier Access To Archives." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090422121947.htm (accessed July 28, 2014).

Share This




More Computers & Math News

Monday, July 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Teen's Phone Ignites Under Her Pillow; How Real Is The Risk?

Teen's Phone Ignites Under Her Pillow; How Real Is The Risk?

Newsy (July 28, 2014) A Texas teen's Samsung phone apparently ignited while she slept, but what was the real problem here? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Google's Next Frontier: The Human Body

Google's Next Frontier: The Human Body

Newsy (July 27, 2014) Google is collecting genetic and molecular information to paint a picture of the perfectly healthy human. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cellphone Unlocking Bill Clears U.S. House, Heads to Obama

Cellphone Unlocking Bill Clears U.S. House, Heads to Obama

Reuters - US Online Video (July 27, 2014) Congress gets rid of pesky law that made it illegal to "unlock" mobile phones without permission, giving consumers the option to use the same phone on a competitor's wireless network. Mana Rabiee reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Congress OKs Unlocking Phones From Carriers

Congress OKs Unlocking Phones From Carriers

Newsy (July 26, 2014) A bill legalizing "unlocking," or untethering a phone from its default wireless carrier, has passed Congress and is expected to be signed into law. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins