Distributed proofreaders for music?
November 18, 2014 10:35 AM   Subscribe

Is there such a thing? By which I mean, teams of people collaboratively transcribing public domain sheet music into some kind of open format.
posted by dilaudid to Media & Arts (3 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I think Mutopia is probably the closest to what you're thinking of. There's also IMSLP but that's not as focused on typesetting, more on scanning in PDFs.
posted by mskyle at 10:49 AM on November 18, 2014

ABCNotation.com. I don't know the mechanics of how it works, but they have a lot of music available, mostly just the melodies.
posted by SemiSalt at 11:03 AM on November 18, 2014

Quoting from The ABC Music Project, "ABC, developed by Chris Walshaw, is a format designed to notate music using plain text. It was originally designed for folk tunes of Western European origin which can be written on one staff, but has since been extended to support the notation of complete, classical music scores."

It's pretty cool, the music gets stored as ascii representing the letters of the notes and some metadata about the piece (time signature, key, etc). capital/lowercase give you octaves, numbers for timing, break up bars with |, and you've got a simple melody.
Then you add text annotations for things like tempo notes, guitar chords, lyrics, etc, use parenthesis to group notes played at the same time, etc.

Once you get into multi-staff scores, that's beyond my understanding of it. In general, the broad databases of lots and lots of tunes are collected by people interested in traditional fiddle melodies, folk songs, etc. I don't know of databases that have classical pieces in ABC, but that's not my area of expertise. It's technically possible but would be a lot more work than simple tunes.
posted by aimedwander at 11:20 AM on November 18, 2014

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