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August 31, 2008

IntegraBrowser: An offline webapp to browse IXD files

I have now a functional IXD file browser: A webapp to browse information stored in the Integra eXtensible Document (IXD) format. The IXD is an XML dialect defined in a group of XML Schemas (currently 2) designed to efficiently store and describe information about live electro-acoustic music and related practices. It maps with a database schema (PostgreSQL) on the one hand and a ANSI C library on the other. Much more information may be found at www.integralive.orgwhich also links to the Sourceforge project site. There is also a wiki for the Integra development to be found here.

The primary goal of the IntegraBrowser was for me to realize the idea of the extended score: A score that apart from the score also contained information about the score, about the performances, recordings, recordings of performances, images, score instructions, performance instructions, instructions for the electronics parts, all sound files for the electronics parts, etc. One of the purposes of the extended score is to allow for a performer have as easy access to the meta-information on a piece as he/she would have to the score and the ideas grew out of the wish to document the process of piece rather than the "work". Now, this is not in any way a new idea. The process rather than the result is a mantra that's been repeated for som 40-50 years (at least) and in music it dates back to Satie if not longer.

Nevertheless, the Integra project framework along with the IntegraBrowser allows for adding, editing, sharing, and transmitting a process oriented score which may keep on growing as performances and version are added. Fully implemented it will download and upload its datafiles from the server while online, which, once downloaded, are fully accessible locally. That is, they may also be edited e.g. after a soundcheck if the mixer settings were particularly satisfying, the musician snaps a photo of the desk and adds it to the data file.

One final note note about the IntegraBrowser is that, by reducing the focus on the notation, mainly just by adding other types of information, the difference between the documentation of an improvisation and a composed work of music is lessened. In the end that may teach us something about what the real difference between these two musical practices actually constitutes.

There will soon be a link to the beta version of the IntegraBrowser here!

Posted by henrikfr at 10:07 PM | Comments (1)