Talk:ABC notation

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Talk[edit]

Could anyone add anything about, specifically, Lord of the Rings Online (Turbine) .abc, please?

Halcyonhalogen (talk) 17:51, 12 November 2011 (UTC)

External links[edit]

I just reverted a wholesale removal of external links. In my opinion, many, if not all, of these links add encyclopedic value to the article, and their presence does not amount to a "mere collection of external links". __ Just plain Bill (talk) 19:36, 28 August 2012 (UTC)

The reason why I removed such a large number of external links was because there were so many (27) to start with. "There is nothing wrong with adding one or more useful content-relevant links to an article; however, excessive lists can dwarf articles and detract from the purpose of Wikipedia."
The topic of the article is the ABC notation format. I therefore have no general problem with the links to the format's documentation, as they contain detailed and relevant information about the format. However, the FAQ contains much less information which to my knowledge is either present in this article or in the remaining external links; I therefore removed the link to it.
I removed the "Software", "ABC Tune Collections" and "ABC Search Engines" sections because they are only tangentially related to the article topic, the format of ABC notation, and in any case are directories. Moreover, the "ABC Search Engines" section contains only "links to any search results pages, such as links to ... search engines" which should normally be avoided. Michael Anon 17:43, 29 August 2012 (UTC)
It makes little sense to limit the scope of this article narrowly to the format of the notation when the notation's reason for existence is the collection and sharing of music, or to be more precise, musical transcriptions. The Wikipedia article on NoteWorthy Composer, for example, links to the Noteworthy Scriptorium, which indexes available *.nwc files as well as other resources of interest to NoteWorthy users.
The number and extent of searchable abc collections is evidence of the notation's usefulness and popularity. In other words, those links provide evidence of the topic's notability.
The number of external links in this article can hardly be said to "dwarf" the article. Depending on window width, they occupy on the order of 15% of the page.
When "links to search engines" are disparaged in WP:EL, I take that to mean links like this. I believe that in the context of this article, links to specialized tools for searching abc collections are appropriate. __ Just plain Bill (talk) 18:33, 29 August 2012 (UTC)
I am not intending to limit the scope of the article, only the external links. I would firstly distinguish the link to Noteworthy Scriptorium, which contains useful information about NoteWorthy Composer in addition to an index of files, to the mere lists of collections which exist in this article, collections which tell us nothing substantial about the subject of the article – the ABC notation format. I acknowledge that there may be scope for one link to the definitive implementation of the format (or, preferably, to a directory of the software); however, that directory does not belong in the article. Moreover, the reason that I did not list the directory is that it is contained on http://abcnotation.com/, which the article already links to.
Notability is not established by long lists of external links, but by "significant coverage in reliable sources that are independent of the subject". In particular, the sources should be secondary to support notability, while I would argue that the links to the software packages are primary due to their direct implementation of the format.
I was quoting the language of the policy when referring to dwarfing the article. The point is that this is not about a small sample of links, but about 27, which fill an entire page if I scroll to the bottom of the article. This is, in my opinion, excessive. Sampling featured articles randomly, Tropical cyclone contains 10 external links, Scouting contains 7, while Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky and The Five, Irreplaceable, Diorama (album) and Noble gas all contain none.
My understanding is that even links to specialised search engines should not normally be added to articles – why else would the policy list both links to "individual web searches" and "search engines" in the same sentence? Moreover, a link to a search engine does not provide "neutral and accurate material that is relevant to an encyclopedic understanding of the subject"; it just provides a link that forces the visitor to search for more information. Michael Anon 07:21, 30 August 2012 (UTC)
I have requested input from the external links noticeboard to allow a consensus to be formed on what alterations, if any, should be made to the article's external links. Michael Anon 07:37, 5 September 2012 (UTC)
As there's still no consensus or input from other editors, I have requested a third opinion. Michael Anon 10:32, 8 September 2012 (UTC)
Searchtool-80%.png Response to third opinion request:
Having looked through all of the external links, it seems to me that very few of them impart information not in the article, which is the intended purpose of external links. A number of them are to abcnotation.com; I can't see anything to be gained by providing multiple links to different pages of the same site, and I note that we are in agreement that the site as a whole is a valid external link, so we can reduce that to just the one. Most of the others are to directories of music in ABC notation; I don't see that they add anything substantive to the article beyond proving that they exist, and WP is not a collection of links, so I think a removal is legitimate. Others are to assorted bits of software, which, again, prove nothing beyond their existence. Such links might belong on a List of ABC collections and software page (or pages), if such a thing were deemed notable - I have no particular thoughts on whether they are or not - but I don't think they belong here. Another link is to the WP PySynth page, which isn't external, and so belongs under "See Also", not in the external links section. The only deleted link that I think might be okay is to the ABC FAQ. It may not add much encyclopedic information to that in the article, but it is presented differently, and I think could justifiably be useful.Anaxial (talk) 11:15, 8 September 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for the opinion Anaxial. I would agree with the changes you have suggested. Michael Anon 12:12, 8 September 2012 (UTC)
I have implemented the proposed changes.[1][2] Michael Anon 07:06, 10 September 2012 (UTC)
I have restored a link to the Concertina.net tune converter, as an example of a widely-used simple tool for rendering abc as staff notation.
It makes no sense at all to have an article on this format merely in terms of the format itself. ABC notation has enabled a considerable body of "literature" to be compactly stored on line, and rendered graphically across a variety of platforms. I'd like to see readers be conveniently guided to some examples of that literature. In aid of that, I've put back the link to thesession.org, and would like to see one or two more (such a Henrik Norbeck's site) come back as well. I believe this is a place for common-sense interpretation of guidelines and policies. __ Just plain Bill (talk) 19:32, 10 September 2012 (UTC)
I agree that the fact that the format allows a lot of music to be compactly stored online could be included in the article, as could a list of platforms that the format is compatible with. However, the importance of that information does not reasonably lead to the conclusion that there should be external links to specific sites that store tunes or to conversion systems. Even ignoring all rules the key question that I believe should be asked about any external link is what readers of the Wikipedia article will gain from following it. The links to the databases of Irish and Swedish music[3][4] don't add anything to the article or even seem relevant – the only dubious connection is the format. Similarly, the Concertina.net tune converter provides an effectively blank page requesting input. No pertinent information is provided except for the fact that format conversion is possible, information which would be better placed in the article body. Michael Anon 16:45, 11 September 2012 (UTC)
Of course the Concertina tune converter link goes to an input screen; that is the whole point of the link. The "information not in the article" imparted by that link is "and here is a convenient way to render an abc tune in staff notation." In my experience, it is the most convenient way for someone with nothing more than a computer and a web connection to accomplish that. Do you think the reader should not be given that information? If not, why not?
For the same reason (convenience to the reader) I maintain that access to some representative abc tune collections should be linked from this article. They most certainly are relevant, because those collections are a major part of the format's value. The page is not so large that another handful of links will overwhelm anybody's browser. That would be a valid reason for splitting out a list of abc tune collections, but as of now that reason does not apply. Just plain Bill (talk) 18:16, 12 September 2012 (UTC)
I am not suggesting that there is an issue with the length of the article, merely that there is a question of editorial judgement.
In my opinion, convenience should not be the determining factor in adding external links, but informativeness – this would align with what I believe the primary purpose of an encyclopedia: to inform. The Concertina tune converter informs the reader that the website can be used to render music, but this is merely specific information that a particular product is available; similarly, the links to the music databases simply inform the reader that collections are available. However, none of these links add anything encyclopedic to the reader's understanding of the abc notation format and therefore should not be included.
I agree that the value of the format should be neutrally explained to the reader, but the information should be suitably sourced and in the article body – the links themselves do not communicate this message. Michael Anon 18:03, 13 September 2012 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I have requested a third opinion as there is still no agreement. Michael Anon 08:01, 20 September 2012 (UTC)

Searchtool-80%.png Response to third opinion request:
Hi. First off, sorry for rolling back the most recent change. I was trying to view the history when my mouse wheel jumped and I clicked rollback by mistake. The external link guidance does not particularly talk about related online tools. The link to the tune converter doesn't violate any of the caveats in the policy, and is arguably "useful" which is one of the possible criteria for link inclusion. I think it would be a very narrow view to say that every external link must be purely informative in the traditional sense. In terms of collections of music in this notation, I think the abcnotation.com link is sufficient, since it in turn includes many links to collections. I don't think we need to directly link to them if we are linking to what amounts to a directory site already. Hope this helps. Gigs (talk) 13:49, 21 September 2012 (UTC)
Thanks Gigs. I see your point on the tune converter and would therefore be content to leave the link in the article; I agree with you on the music collections links. Michael Anon 09:32, 22 September 2012 (UTC)
Other articles here give lists of software for this or that (e.g., MIDI sequencers, audio programs, notation programs, etc.) Maybe this could be done with ABC notation? :) Misty MH (talk) 00:05, 10 August 2013 (UTC)

A more-complete example of ABC notation[edit]

Hi, I love that there is an example of how this works and turns into notation. Yet it did not include all the letters used in notation. For example, the piece has no C in it. Also, there is no indication in the example of how sharps and flats and all might work. Also, what if it goes into the Bass Clef? or far above the Treble Clef? Etc. And 1/16 notes? And others? Etc. It would be great to see a more complete example included in the article, especially for those who don't wish to hunt it down elsewhere. Would someone like to add a more-complete example of ABC notation? Thanks! Misty MH (talk) 00:03, 10 August 2013 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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External links modified[edit]

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