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ARSCLIST  May 2007

ARSCLIST May 2007

Subject:

Re: Mass Digitization was... 'New' solution for stickey shed

From:

"Steven C. Barr(x)" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 15 May 2007 01:31:38 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (81 lines)

see end...
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Steven Smolian" <[log in to unmask]>
> There are library cataloging rules.  Most of the conflicing entries 
> situations have been addressed.  The results are sometimes less literarily 
> graceful than one might want, but are set up to sort the way the computer 
> thinks.
> 
> Clasical music presents a special set of difficulties, among which are those 
> related to its international nature.  When working through a castaloging 
> sceme, it makes sense to be aware of these.
> 
> The fatal error in all cataloging I've seen including that used by libraries 
> is to have grafted the simplest stuff with the more and most complex.  As 
> slowing as it may be, the only truly successful system starts with the most 
> difficult, a lesson the American Library Associan has yet to learn.
> 
> The idea of getting your CD data into a database from the net still requires 
> careful placement of the title and performer components, a system to make 
> sure the performer and/or performing group name is spelled the same way 
> every time, and one that allow the performance to be uniquely identified 
> regardless of the label on which it is issued.
> 
> You'll need a method for pops of separating songs using the same title but 
> which are different compositions.
> 
> Good luck.  Some of us are more sceptical than others but it's in the best 
> interest of those on this list to be rooting for you.
> ----- Original Message ----- 
> From: "D P Ingram" <[log in to unmask]>
> > On 15 maj 2007, at 02.52, Tom Fine wrote:
> >> Here's a thought. One of the largest collections of music metadata  is 
> >> Gracenote and also cddb. And, like everything else out
> >> there that is a non-paid "communal" effort, it's chock full to the  brim 
> >> of errors and judgement calls that are sometimes right
> > I concur with this. It is also a problem when you get several  "version", 
> > some with spelling errors and the like.  This is one thing  I am trying to 
> > develop out with my project. It won't be a CDDB/ Gracenote but hopefully 
> > the information will be a)accurate and b)peer  reviewable/editable.  I am 
> > just worried what happens when two experts  collide though.   Nothing to 
> > "show" yet but hopefully in the not too  distant future when the developer 
> > gets it into an alpha/data entry  stage.
> >
> 
Well, the first problem (IMO) is that librarians and those educated in
Library Science inevitably try to use applications originally created
for cataloguing library contents! So, what happens is that these programs
see everything as a book...at best, a special sort of a book. Since there
are a number of characteristics which books don't share with phonorecords
(or images, or moving images, or...) the result is more or less trying
to make a square peg fit a round hole by using a bigger hammer...!

Other inherent problems:

1) Digital schemes won't, unless carefully created, be able to sort
"diacriticized" vowels in the same order as compiled written indices.
Thus classical phonorecords...or even non-North-American pop phonorecords...
need digital "special handling" if "E-umlaut" is to sort between "E" and
"F" (or among the "E's!").

2) Similarly, digital schemes will have no end of trouble sorting titles
"as they exist"...with various punctuation-mark characters as well as
numeric-digit characters included. Say you want "Don't Be Like That" to
fall after "Donna" but before "Doo Doodle Oom"...

3) Then we come to catalog and matrix numbers! I sort my 3x5 cards so
that numeric-only SF Columbias come first...then A- (and other prefixed)
Columbias...then -D (and other suffixed Columbias...and finally numeric-
only again, starting at 35200...! As well, matrix numbers often carry
both prefixes and suffixes, often with hyphens...

4) "Identical but different" song titles...yup! For example, count the
number of tunes titled "Sugar"...

And, finally, for CD's: What happens when the record company suddenly
decides to use a brand-new numbering system, but keep a lot of older
product in their catalog...? All of a sudden, ABC-1234 becomes 
07-XX-221...

Steven C. Barr

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