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RE: Braille & Lime

From: Ralph Little
Subject: RE: Braille & Lime
Date: Fri, 20 Dec 2002 09:53:52 -0000

I gave it some thought last night and I tend to agree.

It might also require a lot less time to work a \midi style extension (e.g.
\braille{}) to drop out the braille version of the music, although the
ability to mix normal and braille scoring might be desirable albeit a lot
more complicated.

If you look at example 1.2-1 on it might be desirable to
encode the braille as a separate line above the staff like they have there
for teaching purposes, not to mention the potential testing benefits(!).
Switching off the normal staff engraving would leave just the braille.
Something that DOES occur to me though is that mixing Braille and stave may
affect the spacing of the stave notation as there are a few circumstances
where the Braille takes more horizontal space than the stave. This might not
be a problem if the two do not have to correlate exactly.

Spacing is not significant to the extent that it is in ordinary notation,
and the music is encoded into simply a list of Braille symbols, as spacing
is a lot less significant to a blind reader.

For example, 

\score {
        \time 3/4
        \notes {
                \relative c' {
                        c2 c32 d e f g8
                        \bar "||"
        (Stuff in [] is encoded as a special sequence of 1 or more Braille

        [number] [c] [d]    --->Braille encodes digits as letters preceeded
by a special character.
        [treble clef]
        [5th octave] [minim C] [smaller vals (<= 16ths)] [demisemi
C][demisemi D][demisemi E][demisemi F]
        [larger vals (>= 8ths)][quaver G][double bar]

There are some precedence rules to take account of with the output (for
accidentals/octaves/mode switches etc), so I will try to define the encoding
in BNF and then knock something together for the French chap to test, but
apart from that, I can see a definate correlation between Lilypond script
and Braille encoding.

The guy that wants to use it ultimately uses Windows at present.
His friend who sent the original e-mail says that he may be able to wean him
onto Linux :P, but it may not make any difference in the long term if the
software is just doing an export, anyway.

I'm not familiar with the XML stuff, so I will get the current CVS version
and have a look.

After saying all that, the printer may turn out to be a bit of a problem, so
I will find out what it is and what he uses to print to it at present,
especially if it does not accept Postscript and there is no Linux driver for
it, which might well be the case if it is a special embossing one.
I have asked the question and Mr. Guery is going to get back to me about it.


-----Original Message-----
From: Han-Wen Nienhuys [mailto:address@hidden 
Sent: 19 December 2002 22:43
To: Ralph Little
Cc: 'address@hidden'
Subject: Braille & Lime

address@hidden writes:
> Otherwise, it seems to me that with the aid of a suitable font, another
> engraver might do the trick for this.
> The Braille Music is encoded as a Braille character stream not too
> to standard music notation so that it could be another output option not
> unlike figured bass or somesuch.

The important question is how spacing and layout is handled.  If there
are no complex rules that relate durations and the spaces they take,
then a variant of XML (or perhaps, hacking up something like the MIDI
backend) is probably the way to go.

(unless you want to mix normal notation and braille, of course)

Han-Wen Nienhuys   |   address@hidden   | 

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