For Audiveris, music is something very graphical, a 2D view of music symbols (staff lines, bar lines, note heads, stems, flags, beams, alterations, …) with some “geometrical” relations between them (a note head and its stem, an alteration sign and the altered head, a lyric item and its related chord, a slur and its embraced heads, …).

The pixels of the score image are displayed in the background and serve as guidelines for the interactive user. Some pixels may have been gathered into Glyph instances by the OMR engine, but this “segmentation”, as it is called, is not always relevant, especially on poor quality images.

The entities that really matter for the final music content are the Inter (interpretation) instances and the Relation instances that formalize a relationship between two Inter instances, resulting in the SIG (Symbol Interpretation Graph) of each system.
If you are still unfamiliar with these notions of pixel / glyph / inter / relation / sig, please have a look at the dedicated Main Entities section.

We can think of Audiveris OMR as a process that takes an image as input and produces as output a structured collection of music symbols.

  • The OMR engine is one actor, which moves forward from step to step, creating a bunch of entities.
  • The OMR user is another actor, who can interactively modify some entities, and decide how to move the engine.

The resulting objects are divided into two categories:

  1. Containers. They are built at the beginning of the sheet processing and define the global structure of the sheet musical content, organized in a hierarchical structure of containers:
    • staff lines, gathered in …
    • staves, gathered in …
    • parts, gathered in …
    • systems, gathered in …
    • pages, gathered in …
    • scores

    Since the 5.2 release, the user can partly modify this hierarchy, by splitting and merging systems, parts and measures.

  2. Inters. They represent candidate interpretations, formalized by Inter instances, handled within each system by a graph (SIG) of Inter vertices linked by Relation edges. Within each system SIG, it’s the struggle for life, since only the strongest inters survive in the end.
    There is no structure within the Inter instances of a SIG, just Relation instances possibly set between a pair of Inter instances.
    Since the 5.2 release, all these Inter and Relation instances can be modified interactively.

    Inter objects are everything except the static containers mentioned above:

    • Barline, ledger, clef, key signature, time signature, chord, head, alteration, augmentation dot, stem, beam, rest, flag, slur, sentence, word, etc… are examples of Inters.
    • An InterEnsemble is an Inter composed of other Inter instances. This composition is formalized by a Containment relation between the ensemble inter and each of the contained Inter instances.
      These ensembles can be:
      • A Chord which contains one or several note heads or one rest.
      • A Sentence which contains words. – A LyricLine is a special kind of Sentence, composed of LyricItem’s –
      • A Key which contains key alter signs.
      • A TimePair which contains a numerator number and a denominator number.
      • A BeamGroup which contains several parallel beams.
      • A StaffBarline which is a horizontal sequence of simple Barlines.

Measures are hybrid, since they are not Inters but depend on barlines which are Inters.

Beside Inter and Relation entities, glyphs, which are just sets of foreground pixels, can be used to create new Inters. Hence, Glyph instances are also entities that the user can select and transcribe to Inter entities.

The Audiveris editor has been designed to work on the SIG data model, that is essentially to play directly with Inter and Relation instances.