Music Space

Music is audio, and any visual representation is symbolic. The trick is to decide what to show visually. Even when showing physical soundwaves visually the presentation is symbolic. Ideally a music markup language would start at the physics of music. But the very long tradition of CWMN is based on a visual representaion of music symbols on a coordinate system - a function of time and frequency.

Music as a function of time and frequency.

A general music markup language should be able to describe multiple simultaneous music events that are synchronised with one another. Such an approach should also be able to describe music in multimedia contexts, such as performances that include litghing, actors, dancers, and props. HyTime introduced the concept of Finite-Coordinate-Space (FCS), which is an abstract cordinate-based system onto which music events are placed. In MML this concept is extended as a 3D coordinate space onto which events and objects are placed. The X-axis indicates time (or duration) and could be either absolute (i.e. clock-based) or relative (relative relations between events). The Y-axis could either describe frequency (either absolute in Hz, or relative with reference to ratios between sounds), elevantion (for spatial descriptions). The Z-axis is used for synchronisation of simultaneous events. For multiple instrument music songs, each instrument would be described on a separate Z-axis. Props, instruments and all kinds of objects are described on this axis.

A 2D graphical representation of 3D Music Space


1999, 2000, 2007 Author: Jacques Steyn