Music Technology Seminar (MUMT621)

Music Information Acquisition, Preservation, and Retrieval

Outline for Winter 2014

ISMIR Paper submission deadline: 2 May 2014


Special Guest: Brian McMillan (ppt)



HTML presentations (10–15 min)

  • Jason: Online music stores in China
  • Andrew: Comparison of online music stores
  • Connor: Musipedia and
  • Elliot: Million Song Dataset
  • Catherine: IMSLP
  • Classifiers (genre, instrument, mood, performer, composer, rhythm, beat tracking, etc.)

Slide-based presentation I

  • Jason: MPEG audio file formats
  • Connor: Ogg Vorbis
  • Elliot: Audio compression techniques
  • Catherine: MEI
  • Andrew: MusicXML and its comparison with MEI
  • Recommendations
  • Playlists
  • Ich: Human History Project

Slide-based presentation II

  • Elliot: k-means, EM, and GMM
  • Andrew: SVM

Special Guest: Cory McKay, “jMIR” (pdf)

  • Jason: HMM
  • Catherine: Artifical Neural Networks
  • Connor: Active Shape Model
  • Reading Week: No class

Slide-based presentation III

  • Jason: Music timbre recognition
  • Connor: Fault diagnostics in vehicle
    engines using sound recognition techniques
  • Elliot: Source separation using Non-negative Matrix Factorization
  • Andrew: Genre classification
  • Catherine: Piano transcriptions



Special guests (11:30–12:25):

  • Christopher Antila: ELVIS (Electronic Locator of Vertical Interval Successions)
  • Jason Hockman: Hardcore, Jungle, and Drum and Bass

Final project proposal due


Slide-based presentation IV

  • Connor: Micro computed tomography measurements
  • Catherine: Tracking and segmenting pianists' gestures of hands and fingers
  • Jason: Automatic chord extraction
  • Elliot: NMR-based transcription
  • Andrew: Playlist/Event recommendation systems

Special guests (11:30–12:25):

  • Andrew Hankinson: Distributed optical music recognition with web services
  • Gabriel Vigliensoni: Discovering music listening patterns in scrobble data

Slide-based presentation IV



Final project bibliography due

Final project presentation



Assignment #1 (Due 01/22) 4%

HTML presentation of existing music databases. Describe the content, history, and uses of the database (10–15 min.):

Assignment #2 (Due 02/05) 6% Slide-based presentation I (15 min.)
  • Slide-based presentation of MPEG formats (MPEG1, MPEG4, MPEG7, MPEG21), Ogg Vorbis, symbolic formats (MusicXML, MEI ), or audio compression techniques
  • Annotated bibliography HTML page with links

Assignment #3 (Due 2/19) 10% Slide-based presentation II (15 min.)
  • Slide-based presentation of review of topics related to classifiers, e.g.: Neural Networks, Support Vector Machines, Gaussian Mixture Models, Hidden Markov Models, AdaBoost, or Dynamic Programming; include music information retrieval applications.
  • Annotated bibliography HTML page with links
  • Written summary (2–3 pages) with complete bibliography (Chicago style, pre-16th edition)

Assignment #4 (Due 03/12) 10% Slide-based presentation III (15 min.)
  • Slide-based presentation on topics of trascription, recognition, annotation, and classification. It may include general review of transcription systems (monophonic, polyphonic, separation): Beat-box transcription, singing transcription, beat/tempo tracking using audio, beat/tempo tracking using MIDI, blackboard polyphonic transcription, Goto's works, historical overviews, real-time pitch tracking, piano music transcription, timbre recognition, genre classification, review of a component of jMIR.
  • Annotated bibliography HTML page with links
  • Written summary (2–3 pages) with extensive bibliography (Chicago style, pre-16th edition)

Assignment #5 (Due 03/19) 5%
  • Final project proposal (1–2 pages with partial bibliography in Chicago style, pre-16th edition, inlcude sub goals)

Assignment #6 (Due 03/26) 10% Slide-based presentation IV (15 min.)
  • Slide-based presentation on review of topics related to similarity, query systems, recommendation / playlist systems, or exploratory research on topics related to your final project.
  • Annotated bibliography HTML page with links
  • Written summary (2–3 pages) with extensive bibliography (Chicago style, pre-16th edition)

Assignment #7 (Due 04/09) 5%

  • Final project presentation (5 min.)
  • Final project full bibliography (Chicago style, pre-16th edition)

Final project (Due 05/06) 40%
  • Software project with description (2–3 pages)


  • Research paper (5–10 pages)

Reading list

  • Byrd, D., and T. Crawford. 2001. Problems of music information retrieval in the real world. Information Processing & Management 38 (2): 249–72.
  • Casey, M., et al. 2008. Content-based music information retrieval. Proceedings of the IEEE 96 (4): 668–96.
  • Downie, S. 2003. Music infomration retrieval. In Annual Review of Information Science and Technology 37, edited by B. Cronin, 295–340. Medford, NJ: Information Today.
  • Foote, J. 1999. An Overview of Audio Information Retrieval. Multimedia Systems 7(1): 2–10.
  • Perfecto, H-B., and F. Gouyon, eds. 2013. MIRrors: Music Infrmation Research reflects on its future. Journal of Intelligent Information Systems 41 (3).
  • All ISMIR papers (2000–12)
  • PhDTheses and Doctoral Dissertations Related to Music Information Retrieval (Pampalk)


Created: 2004.01.02 Modified: Ichiro Fujinaga
McGill Crest