Second milestone: Audio Commons Ecosystem prototype

In April 2017 AudioCommons has reached it’s second milestone, which consists in the deployment of a working prototype of the Audio Commons Ecosystem (ACE). Even though we have not made this prototype public yet (there are still some things that must be improved before making it public), we have connected several pieces of technology to provide a first deployment of the ecosystem which allows the easy consumption of Audio Commons content from Freesound, Jamendo and Europeana in third party applications using the Audio Commons API. In the following paragraphs we briefly summarise the work that we’ve carried out in different aspects of the project and relate to this second milestone. Most of the documents that are produced in the project as well as scientific publications and other kinds of relevant material can be found in the materials section of our website. A broader introduction to the Audio Commons initiative can be found in our position paper.

A major development of this milestone compared to the first milestone is the deployment of the service integration technologies upon which the ACE is built. That is to say, the deployment of a prototype of the Audio Commons Mediator which lies in the very core of the ACE and allows the interoperation between services and tools (applications). The Audio Commons Mediator provided an Audio Commons API endpoint (whose draft specification can be found here). This is a RESTful API endpoint that can be consumed via HTTP requests from third party applications. The prototype of the Audio Commons Mediator features a minimal implementation of the essential services of the ACE, incorporating a basic search endpoint which retrieves content from Jamendo, Freesound and Europeana, and integration with Jamendo Licensing (for licensing Jamendo content). The code of the mediator is open source and released under an Apache 2.0 license. It can be found at a public Github repository. For more details about the Audio Commons Mediator and what are our future developments plans for it you can check this document describing Service Integration Technologies and this other document describing how do we approach the addition of new services in the ecosystem (from a technological point of view).

In parallel to that, the members of the consortium have started working on the audio analysis tools which will allow automatic annotation of audio content for proper publication in the ACE. As for the second milestone, we released prototype versions of tools for the annotation of music samples, the annotation of music pieces and for the annotation of non-musical properties. These tools are still in an initial stage and will continue to be updated until the end of the project, where their final versions will be released. Even though current versions of the tools make use of different technology stacks, it is our goal to facilitate their usage in future iterations by providing a single software container that can be easily run in multiple platforms and which provides analysis output with all the tools developed within AudioCommons.

Complementary to previous work on usage of Creative Commons licenses and potential intellectual property issues raised in the ecosystem, for this second milestone we have also focused on exploring specific use cases of potential actors wanting to join the Audio Commons Ecosystem. In this document, we describe use case comparisons between all current scenarios whereby a user or creator joins the ACE, with consideration for the multiple aspects of this process, including: their motivation and potential benefits, interactions with other ACE partners and license usage requirements. All this information is made available as guidelines for new actors in order to describe how they should be able to interact within the ACE, giving a special consideration to the possibilities of commercial reuse of Creative Commons content.

Furthermore, the commercial partners of the consortium have been working on their prototypes of applications and audio plug-ins which consume different kinds of Audio Commons content, but these can’t be made public at this stage yet. The next milestone is scheduled for the end of June 2018 and its main goals are the release of a second version of the ACE prototype including updated service integration technologies, annotation tools and integration with third party services. Nevertheless, we will keep you updated about the development in the ecosystem way before we reach that milestone. In particular, a public-ready version of the Audio Commons Mediator is expected to be deployed in the coming months. At this point we will be able to open the ecosystem to the general public for testing and experimentation.