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Package "plumdrum"

Title:Parsing of Humdrum/Kern symbolic music file format
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Latest version:0.0.6
SHA1 sum:5baf525db02cf5cc8e6c5569f5e247d95be1578d
Author:Samer Abdallah <s.abdallah@ucl.ac.uk>
Download URL:https://raw.githubusercontent.com/samer--/prolog/master/plumdrum/release/plumdrum-0.0.6.tgz


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Humdrum and Kern processing library

This package provides modules for working with Humdrum files in Prolog, including those encoded in the **kern representation.

The library can present Humdrum encoded data at one of two levels of abstraction. The first, lower level, represents a Humdrum file as a big, structured term, composed using a number of algebraic data types. This is produced by hum_read/{2,3}. It contains (just about) all the information in the Humdrum file, but to make sense of it, you have to walk through the data structure, keeping track of various things in a fairly complicated way.

The second, higher, level presents the information via a set of predicates via which one can, essentially, ask simple questions of the Humdrum object, such as, 'how many spines are there in this object?', 'what time does this spine start at?', and 'enumerate the events on this spine!'. Each Humdrum object is presented as a Prolog module, which one can think of either as a deductive database, or an encapsulated world, in the sense of modal logic, where certain things are true. This representation is created by assert_humdrum/3 in humdrum_world.pl.

Humdrum primer

There are a few concepts which are basic to an understanding of Humdrum objects.

The first is the idea of a time slice. Each row, or record, of a Humdrum file, excluding header and other metadata, corresponds to a certain time slice, that is a definite interval in on a musical timeline, where time is counted metrically in beats. Times are represented as rational numbers in this library.

The second is the concept of a 'spine'. Spines are like columns in a database, and are used to represent multiple 'voices' in a piece of music, or multiple types of information to be attached to a given timeslice. The complicating twist is that, since in music, voices can come and go arbitrarily, spines can also come and go as you progress through time. Hence, there is syntax for a variety of spine operations, including creating, destroy, splitting, joining and rearranging.

The third is the idea of 'interpretations', which are attached to each spine of a Humdrum obect, are divided into two classes: 'exclusive interpretations', also known as 'representations', define the basic 'data-type' of a spine, and so each spine has, at any time, exactly one exclusive interpretation. Non-exclusive interpretations, or just 'interpretations', add information about how data in a spine is two be understood, and a spine can have multiple interpretations.

Extensible representation handling

One of the defining features of Humdrum is that it has an extensible system for adding new representation types (which one can think of as roughly equivalent to column types in a database).

Plumdrum tries to expose this by defining some hook predicates via which parsers for arbitrary representations can be added. Currently, the following representations are included:

  • dynam.pl encodes the 'dynamics' representation, for loudness markings, and the 'db' representation for acoustic loudness in decibels.
  • kern.pl encodes the 'kern' representation for pitches and other basic score elements. Both of these define clauses of hum_data_hook//2 which, given the name of the representation, define how to parse characters from the Humdrum file according to that representation and return a term representing the data.

Since time is basic to Humdrum objects, there is a hook predicate hum_duration_hook/3, which must be able to compute the duration of a data item from any representation, given the item that was parsed using hum_data_hook//2.

As well as a mechanism for adding exclusive interpretations, there is a mechanism for adding ordinary, non-exclusive interpretations, using hum_interp_hook//1, which must be able to parse the characters from a Humdrum file signifying an interpretation and return a term encoding the information in the interpretation signifier.


Contents of pack "plumdrum"

Pack contains 14 files holding a total of 112K bytes.