Music Encoding Initiative

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The Music Encoding Initiative (MEI) is an open-source[1] effort to create a system for representation musical documents in a machine-readable structure.[2] MEI closely mirrors work done by text scholars in the Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) and while the two encoding initiatives are not formally related, they share many common characteristics and development practices. MEI, like TEI, describes the governing organization and the markup language. The MEI community solicits input and development directions from specialists in various music research communities, including technologists, librarians, historians, and theorists in a common effort to discuss and define best practices for representing a broad range of musical documents and structures. The results of these discussions are then formalized into the MEI schema, a core set of rules for recording physical and intellectual characteristics of music notation documents. This schema is expressed in an XML Schema Language, with RelaxNG being the preferred format.

The MEI Schema is developed using the One-Document-Does it all (ODD) format, a literate programming XML format developed by the Text Encoding Initiative.


  1. ^ Google Code Repository
  2. ^ Hankinson, Andrew; Roland, Perry; Fujinaga, Ichiro (2011). "The Music Encoding Initiative as a document encoding framework" (PDF). Proceedings of the International Society for Music Information Retrieval. October: 293–298. Retrieved 31 March 2015. 

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