Posts Tagged ‘MusicBrainz’

Happy April Fools’ Day!

April-1Today we celebrate April Fool’s Day. And what better way to do it than to leverage semantic resources to find some interesting facts about the holiday and a few ideas for things to do today, too?

Just like these:

What to Watch:

The April Fools: a late 60’s romantic comedy starring Jack Lemmon and Catherine Deneuve

April Fool’s Day: called a “gory, darkly comic cult favorite” from the late ‘80s.

April Fools: The day belongs to the slasher flicks, this one centering on the accidental killing of a teen, its coverup, and subsequent murders of those responsible for the original incident.

What To Listen To:

Sounds of Silence: The Simon & Garfunkel release includes the song, April Come She Will. And after this winter, that’s something a lot of people will be very happy to hear.

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Music Discovery Service Launches

screen shot of search: Lou ReedThis week marked the public launch of has tracked seevl’s development through various incarnations, including a YouTube plugin and as a service for users of Deezer (available as a Deezer app). This week’s development, however, sees the service emerge as a stand-alone, cross-browser, cross-platform, mobile-ready service; a service that is free and allows for unlimited search and discovery. So, what can one do with seevl?

Following the death of Lou Reed this week, I (not surprisingly) saw mentions of the artist skyrocket across my social networks. People were sharing memories and seeking information — album and song titles, lyrics, biographies, who influenced Reed, who Reed influenced, and a lot of people simply wanted to listen to Reed’s music.  A quick look at the listing for Lou Reed shows a wealth of information including a music player pre-populated with some of the artist’s greatest hits.

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Let The Music Play On: iTunes Radio Arrives Soon With Siri Support

Does the leading Internet radio service Pandora, which is based on Pandora Media’s Music Genome Project, have anything to fear from Apple?

Apple’s iPhone 5C and 5S smartphones, formally launched yesterday, boast the new iOS 7 operating system to be officially released next week, and that means they also boast iTunes Radio. Craig Federighi, senior vice president of Software Engineering, talked about the expected feature at the launch, according to reports, discussing how users can create their own stations from favored artists, songs and genres, a la Pandora.

iTunes Radio will be available to iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, PC, and Apple TV users. As consumers use iTunes Radio more, it will get to know their tastes to deliver more of what they like. Pandora, which just celebrated the 5-year anniversary of its iPhone app in July, works by letting users pop in a favorite artist, song, or genre name for the Music Genome Project to scan against the million or so pieces of music it’s already analyzed by their various attributes, with music “genes” related to characteristics like type of background vocals or gender of lead vocalist, to find options with similar musical features.

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EventMedia Live, Winner of ISWC Semantic Web Challenge, Starts New Project With Nokia Maps, Extends Architecture Flexibility

The winner of the Semantic Web Challenge at November’s International Semantic Web Conference (ISWC) was EventMedia Live, a web-based environment that exploits real-time connections to event and media sources to deliver rich content describing events that are associated with media, and interlinked with the Linked Data cloud.

This week, it will begin a one-year effort under a European Commission-funded project to align its work with the Nokia Maps database of places, so that mobile users of the app can quickly get pictures of these venues that were taken by users with EventMedia’s help.

A project of EURECOM, a consortium combining seven European universities and nine international industrial partners, EventMedia Live has its origins in the “mismatch between those sites specializing in announcing upcoming events and those other sites where users share photos, videos and document those events,” explains Raphaël Troncy, assistant professor at the EURECOM: School of Engineering & Research CenterMultimedia Communications, and one of the project’s leaders.

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Trick or Treat: A Semantic Grab Bag Of Entertainment For the Occasion

Photo credit: Flickr/Erwiss, peace&love

It’s that spooky time of year again. With a happy Halloween to all, we present a selection of Halloween entertainment to dive into between answering the door for trick-or-treaters, or whenever you might like to have a little scarefest. They all come courtesy of searches done on some of the web’s semantically-enabled platforms.

Movies, from

A search on Jinni, the semantic movie and TV “taste engine” that we first covered here, for “serial killer” theme, set in the 20th century in small towns, brings up some classics in the list of 41 that’s displayed, as well as some you may have missed when originally shown in theatres. Some in the list:

Halloween (of course): The 1978 John Carpenter-directed classic that started Jamie Lee Curtis on her fright-girl career (long before the yogurt days).  As a line in the summary says, the film “turned the slasher movie into a viable, successful genre. Halloween has been copied, parodied and even turned into a franchise of its own, but the original is still considered the best of the bunch.”

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Tuning In Social Media To Turn On What You’ll Like

A European Union-funded project to bring the web and TV closer together, called NoTube, wrapped up earlier this year. But its legacy lives on in the form of from Sourcesense. The company, which was one of the project’s co-founders, had a role in the NoTube effort around integrating viewers’ social web activities as part of the platform to deliver TV content in personalized ways to users.

Leveraging the open source software, libraries and best practices that were outcomes of the project, Sourcesense has continued to move forward to deliver a commercial, scalable Web API platform that offers semantically enriched user profiles built from users’ activities performed on the Social Web. One of the first customers of its efforts is one of the largest Italian broadcast companies, RAI, which was also involved in the EU project.

Beancounter is powering a second- screen service on top of the platform to provide its 5 million viewers information on related content that may be of interest to them based on profiling their social activities (with their permission).

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Liner Notes for YouTube – Seevl Plugin

Seevl.netSeevl, the music discovery service built on Semantic Technology that I wrote about a few months ago, has released a significant update to their plugin for YouTube. The plugin is still only available for the Google Chrome browser, but other browser plugins are in the works. You can grab the Chrome plugin here.

Once the plugin is installed, the user has new options available when visiting YouTube. First, there’s a new search option next to the standard YouTube search bar.

Image of Seevl search Link on YouTube site

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Just How Big A Rock Star Is Eric Clapton?

Who has had the greatest impact on rock music? It’s a question that still isn’t answered, despite the efforts of Ronald P. Reck, principal at RRecktek LLC, and Kenneth B. Sall, principal systems engineer/XML data analyst at Ken Sall Consulting.

The team wanted to use semantic technology, along with DBpedia and MusicBrainz data sources, to try and figure out the answer. Reck and Sall recently published a paper, Determining the Impact of Eric Clapton on Music Using RDF Graphs: Selected Challenges of Semantics Across and Within Datasets, based on their experiences. Their plan was to use RDF and SPARQL to query properties and relationships among musical artists to reveal their activity, impact and “six degrees of Eric Clapton” connections to other artists.

Reck and Sall initially saw this project as a door-opener to showing relationships between pieces of data, and drawing inferences and conclusions from them, for a more serious purpose: “We were interested in music, but the real application, especially in the government, is tying the clues together, for example, around terrorists,” says Sall. It turns out that musicians and terrorists have some things in common — they tend to have specific roles in their organizations, and may cross-partner with other groups in loose relationships.

While the work didn’t result in answering the original question posed, it did reveal, as Sall puts it, “what can go wrong in doing this kind of semantic analysis.” That’s in itself useful, as it presents an opportunity to find at least some solutions around those pitfalls.

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Seevl: Part II – An interview with Alexandre Passant

Alexandre Passant

Yesterday, I wrote about how I’ve been using Seevl as a music discovery service. Today, I catch up with Dr. Alexandre Passant, CEO and Founder of, for a deeper look at the music discovery service.

Q: How would you describe Seevl?

A: We initially defined ourselves solely as a music discovery website, and we’re now developing several products around the data we gathered for building it. Our main focus is to bring context to music, and we want to help people to know more about the cultural and musical universe of the bands they like, to discover new ones and most importantly, to understand the connections between all.

Q: Where does the name “Seevl” come from?

Read more’s Album Pages Use Linked Data from MusicBrainz has launched a new album pages feature that pulls linked data from MusicBrainz. According to the article, “Just like our artist pages, they take a Musicbrainz ID and pull in linked data from various sources around the internet, including, and Amazon. As our own critics have only reviewed a fraction of the albums out there, we’ve also made it possible for readers to create their own reviews to help other readers find new music. Or you can build up a list of your favourite albums of all time and share it with your friends.” Read more