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Audio Info

The web has been incorporating multimedia into its pages ever since the release of the Mosaic web browser around 1993. It was shortly thereafter that links to many types of audio started to appear on the web. In most cases, it is still difficult for a web browser to extract semantic information about a particular speaker, musician, or piece of audio. In most cases, such information exists on the same web page that contains the links. The Audio Info exploratory discussion is an attempt to create a standard method of marking up metadata and information about one or more audio recordings on a web page.

The Problem

It is difficult for a browser to extract semantic information about a piece of audio listed on a web page. Metadata such as speaker, musician, publisher, label, title of the work, release date, acquisition link, related image artwork and tags can be relevant to a particular audio file.

Having such information marked up can provide a number of benefits to the viewer. If a web browser understands that a particular web page contains a song title performed by an artist, it may produce several new methods of interaction. For example, specific searches may be performed for artists and song titles via general search services such as Google and Wikipedia. Specific search services may also be queried such as MusicBrainz, The Internet Archive, FreeDB, or Bitmunk.

The audio information need not be associated with a file. Note that audio content (The Payback by James Brown) is very different from the audio file format (192Kbps, stereo MP3). The goal of this discussion is to create a Microformat draft for marking up audio metadata and information.


Real-World Examples

Existing Practices

Summary of common patterns discovered

Other attempts to solve The Problem


  • Early drafts
    • audio-info-brainstorming
    • audio-info-proposal
    • audio-info-microformat

See Also