Uni

SCOREPEDIA: Guidelines, Suggestions, and Q&A

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I was thinking the same thing. If we can help people understand what we're looking for, maybe the process will be a little less intimidating.

I'm wondering . . . what if we put some sort of "Template" page in the left-hand menu? Something with all the headings and subheadings already in place, so people can open it up, click "Edit," then copy and paste it onto a new page. The layout will be there and ready to go; all they have to do is fill in the open spaces with whatever information they want to contribute (and the rest will be available for others to expand on).

- Uni

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A template would be very nice, and help people avoid having to research too much about editing a wiki, which is a daunting first step. Of course, different film scores might require different treatments; for instance, there are some that we wouldn't have cue lists for. Maybe the template should be very thorough, and then users can delete elements that they don't need.

I love how you included details of all the track listings of the various releases for Poltergeist. It's very nice-looking, but I wonder if we should be using the track listing template we imported from Wikipedia. See my Chamber of Secrets page for a basic example. Note that not all the features for track lists are imported thus far, though.

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A template would be very nice, and help people avoid having to research too much about editing a wiki, which is a daunting first step. Of course, different film scores might require different treatments; for instance, there are some that we wouldn't have cue lists for. Maybe the template should be very thorough, and then users can delete elements that they don't need.

That's what I was thinking. Include everything, then delete what isn't needed (or just fill in the empty space with an "Information unavailable" placeholder or something similar).

I love how you included details of all the track listings of the various releases for Poltergeist. It's very nice-looking, but I wonder if we should be using the track listing template we imported from Wikipedia. See my Chamber of Secrets page for a basic example. Note that not all the features for track lists are imported thus far, though.

Absolutely—I would rather we use organizational elements like tables and charts. I missed seeing that we had this template available. I was going to add a bit of info to the cue list itself (the date each piece was recorded, for example), but that should be as easy as adding another "extra_column" preset in the right place.

I'll need a little time to reorganize the info onto this template, but I'll get it done. (Thanks for the reminder!)

UPDATE: Done and done. A bit of a pain, but knowing this template exists going forward I'll have an easier setup ready to go and it'll be much smoother sailing.

- Uni

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Okay . . . I'm still working on the thematic analysis, and there's some reference stuff that needs to be added, but I figure it's about time for the next article to hit the site--especially since I got to see the movie itself in the theater for the first time ever tonight: Alien.

This one represented a big step forward for me, and hopefully for the site, too. First off, it's even longer than the one I did for Poltergeist, though some of that arises from the fact that Alien had a much more dramatic and interesting backstory to it. But this time it's not just about one page. I took a much more "organic" approach to it, thinking not just about the article itself but about its extensions and references.

It started as a simple desire to streamline the writing. I found myself inserting parenthetical descriptions of the exotic instruments Goldsmith used for the recording; then I realized how much easier, and better for the site, it would be if I just gave each instrument its own page, since it seems appropriate to have that kind of information there as well. So I copied over a few pages from Wikipedia, trimmed them down to a sleeker length, inserted a "Use in film music" heading . . . and suddenly there were a bunch of new pages, and much more efficient central article. (I did the same with a film scoring term or two.)

Then I started mulling over better formatting for the cue listing. I went back to the drawing board and learned table-making from scratch. From there I learned the craft of template-making, and started to experiment not just with the content but the visual appearance as well. Along the way I created new infoboxes for both composers and scores, a nice version of a quote box, and a few other odds and ends. Again, it's all trial-and-error, and wide open to comment and criticism, but I figured it's about time the place started establishing a look and feel that gives it some credibility. Hopefully that'll draw attention to it and inspire others to contribute.

So let me know what you think, and if you have any other ideas or questions.

- Uni

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So let me know what you think, and if you have any other ideas or questions.

Wow, this is an tremendously detailed article. Thank you very much, Uni.

Uni, would you mind adding some information about registration to the first posting? Anyone who wants to register can contact me through this site or via mail to contact@scorepedia.org.

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My hat is off to you. You did a fantastic job. I especially love the detailed info on all the releases, and the cue list, plus the info on the scoring sessions.

All I can say in the way of constructive criticism is that I think the colors on the cue list could be improved. Also, given your generous use of images in the article, it might be nice to have one of Goldsmith. I assume there must not have been any photos of the scoring sessions available, though, or you probably would have used them.

All in all, a very inspiring entry and a definitive resource for this score :) Great work Uni!

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Uni, would you mind adding some information about registration to the first posting? Anyone who wants to register can contact me through this site or via mail to contact@scorepedia.org.

This is what I needed! Thanks, Marcus. A couple of people have expressed interest.

Check your PMs when you get a chance. There's an item or two I can't get figured out that I'd like to see us using.

My hat is off to you. You did a fantastic job. I especially love the detailed info on all the releases, and the cue list, plus the info on the scoring sessions.

All I can say in the way of constructive criticism is that I think the colors on the cue list could be improved. Also, given your generous use of images in the article, it might be nice to have one of Goldsmith. I assume there must not have been any photos of the scoring sessions available, though, or you probably would have used them.

Thanks, friend. (I told you it was coming!)

I would love to have found a pic of Jerry during the scoring sessions for this. As far as I can tell, none exist. And I'm not too terribly keen on just sticking in an arbitrary pic of the composer on every score page we do. (Once you really start broadening the pool for guys like Goldsmith and Williams, pretty soon you're gonna run outta pictures to use.) The people who visit this page first and want to know what Jerry looks like can just follow the link to his page.

You say the colors can be "improved." Can you be more specific? I was experimenting with the idea of having each cue list reflect something of the natural color scheme of the film's marketing and imaging. (You can now see a similar example over on the Poltergeist page.) The background was a bit darker before, but I changed it at the last minute. It may not work, but there's no reason not to give it a try and see how it flies.

While we're on that, I'd be curious to know people's impressions of the new infoboxes—not just for the scores (you can see that example on the new page), but also for the composers, which uses a different color scheme. And take a look at the main page while you're at it. I've added a banner that lines up the categories for visitors. I would really like to put in some relevant daily material there as well: a featured article, birthdays of people in the business, maybe even a summary of interesting film score events that happened on "today's date" in history. That'll take some more code research, though. I'm working on it.

- Uni

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I noticed scorepedia is/was back on track, but there are no posts since october. What's the current status? If this keeps going i will also try to contribute a new score entry like my Minority Report article ;)

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What's the goal? It doubles the info already in Wikipedia?

I asked something along these lines before in this thread, and Uni had this to say:

This was an excellent and necessary point. Ludwig, you were the one who wanted to add a "Style of the Score" section to the articles, a detail that would be too esoteric for Wikipedia's tastes. If you go on too long or indulge in fine-print excesses about a subject they feel only deserves a few paragraphs, the editor types get restless and start slashing prose. Scorepedia is exactly the place where that sort of information can flourish--which is precisely why there should be such a place existing independently of WP.

After that, I was convinced of Scorepedia's merits, so I'm all for the project.

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The thing that is currently missing in Wikipedia (for John Williams by example) is a detailled article for each work, soundtrack and album/single.

Sorry to tell you that, but I think that creating such articles in a look-a-like Wikipedia site, that nobody knows the existence of, is futile.

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The thing that is currently missing in Wikipedia (for John Williams by example) is a detailled article for each work, soundtrack and album/single.

And that could be provided by Scorepedia. So you then say that...

Sorry to tell you that, but I think that creating such articles in a look-a-like Wikipedia site, that nobody knows the existence of, is futile.

:conf::conf::conf:

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Well, i updated some entries with our established structure and added pictures (Lost World, Chamber of Secrets, Super 8, Minority Report, ET). Now it is easier to tell what is missing in each entry and you can add stuff without having to think about the subtitle structure.


The thing that is currently missing in Wikipedia (for John Williams by example) is a detailled article for each work, soundtrack and album/single.

Sorry to tell you that, but I think that creating such articles in a look-a-like Wikipedia site, that nobody knows the existence of, is futile.

Did you not read Uni's response which Ludwig quoted for you? Wikipedia wouldn't allow detailled information or more than just information cause they want it as short as possible and in form of a lexikon. Scorepedia is more than a lexikon and may contain more esoteric sections, long articles for unimportant scores, sound files, made up names for themes, critzism, etc...

The wikipedia editors often are a pain in the ass. For example when i tried to add a paragraph about the horrible reception the new german Game of Thrones translation got they wouldn't accept it. They just deleted my stuff and dismissed all my arguments. Wikipedias rules seem to be overly restrictive and conservative.

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Okay . . . I'm still working on the thematic analysis, and there's some reference stuff that needs to be added, but I figure it's about time for the next article to hit the site--especially since I got to see the movie itself in the theater for the first time ever tonight: Alien.

This one represented a big step forward for me, and hopefully for the site, too. First off, it's even longer than the one I did for Poltergeist, though some of that arises from the fact that Alien had a much more dramatic and interesting backstory to it. But this time it's not just about one page. I took a much more "organic" approach to it, thinking not just about the article itself but about its extensions and references.

Again, it's all trial-and-error, and wide open to comment and criticism, but I figured it's about time the place started establishing a look and feel that gives it some credibility. Hopefully that'll draw attention to it and inspire others to contribute.

So let me know what you think, and if you have any other ideas or questions.

- Uni

Well, hats off... great work and nice to see/saw you back on it in september and october. Your excellent Poltergeist and Alien entries really were my motivation to continue and build on the foundations you have set. I only saw it a few days ago, otherwise i would have contributed earlier. I just need others doing stuff too to get in the mood. So if no one else contributes substantially over the next few weeks i may lose interest again...

Now about what i have done over the last few days. I basically took your structure from february and applied it to many other articles. I uploaded covers and created infoboxes in your new design for many entries.

But we should start to agree on an ideal structure which we can apply to all the entries on the wiki.I still used the older one for now cause we don't have the ideal one yet:

But i also saw your updated structure in the Alien entry which i will post here under the spoiler too.

Now my suggestion for an ideal unified structure would look as follows and we could apply that without too much effort just by adding or renaming the certain subtitles in relevant entries.

I would put the Comission and Temp tracking sections under the bigger section "The composing process" to make them optional subsections only if enough informations are available to make them worthwile.

I would suggest renaming the "Recording" section into for example "Recording the score"

The "Post-production changes" section is a great idea considering how often things get changed.

I also suggest two seperate sections called "Structural Analysis" and "Themes and motifs" instead of only the "Structural Analysis section". My reasoning is to give more emphasis to the "Themes and motifs" section which is better visually seperated and visible that way. This is important to make looking for the audio snippets as easy as possible.

I don't know what's the better name for the last section, References or Sources?

In my opinion the biggest highlight of the wiki now are the small audio snippets of the thematic material. Great job adding the audio player template Uni. I always envisioned a perfect wiki where you can easily check out and listen to every thematic idea of a score in a fast and easy way. We can now offer that with the "Themes and motif section" and this may be one of the biggest reasons scorepedia will be successfull in the long run.

It's just such a convenient tool. Let's say you mention a motif and another person doesn't know it. Then you can just link to scorepedia and tell him/her to play the correct audio snippet of the motif. You even have a tracktitle and timestamps if he/she wants to check it out on cd.

The important thing though is the server load and space. Therefore i suggest to create ogg files with the lowest possible resolution of 94 kbs which only need about 200-300 kbs of space. That would mean about 3 Mb for a big score and should be justifiable even on the long run.

I added audio snippets to my Minority Report entry for every important thematic idea present in the score. I also started fleshing out the E.T. entry and posted a few audio snippets.

It would be great if we could agree on an ideal structure now so that we could have templates for every entry to make adding stuff easier without having to think about which sections are still missing.

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Arright . . . I owe everyone an apology (especially you, SF1) for not responding sooner. I had to take one of my periodic hiatuses from both the Scorepedia project and this place. Happens at least once a year these days, and usually for several months at a time. I just have too much going on, and sound prioritization forces me to set some things aside regardless of how much I like taking part in them. I've been working on some other score-related material in the meantime--some of which I'd like to "debut" on JWFan here in the near future.

I can't say that my time-out period is altogether at an end just yet, but I wanted to get in a few posts and some replies to comments made here. Just because I can't be contributing as much or as consistently as I'd like doesn't mean I've abandoned the project. Nor does it mean I think it's doomed to failure . . . unless you're an eternal pessimist, like this guy:

Sorry to tell you that, but I think that creating such articles in a look-a-like Wikipedia site, that nobody knows the existence of, is futile.

Most things worth pursuing reek of futility when they're first starting out. They only fulfill futility when the people involved take on an attitude like this. I think the value of Scorepedia, in comparison to what's provided on Wikipedia for the same material, has already been demonstrated by what's been posted. Wikipedia doesn't have the space to provide the level of detail that will appeal to scorephiles like the articles at Scorepedia can. It's going to take a long time to get a good amount of material up on the site, but something that requires patience does not automatically equate to "futility." (And as I've said before, if we can get a good system in place with easy-to-use templates and helpful guides, we can open up the idea to other film score sites--at which point the contribution level will likely increase exponentially.)

Also, as before, one of the things that pushed me to take a break was my own insistence on putting together some of those helpful guides--i.e., a Manual of Style and some ground-level informational material for new contributors. I think it's necessary for this to work well, but I can also tell you it can be dull work. It certainly isn't as much fun as researching and writing articles. That sorta burned me out (again). Not sure how I'm going to overcome that one, other than just putting my nose to the grindstone for the sake of the end result.

Now my suggestion for an ideal unified structure would look as follows and we could apply that without too much effort just by adding or renaming the certain subtitles in relevant entries.

I would put the Comission and Temp tracking sections under the bigger section "The composing process" to make them optional subsections only if enough informations are available to make them worthwile.

I would suggest renaming the "Recording" section into for example "Recording the score"

The "Post-production changes" section is a great idea considering how often things get changed.

I also suggest two seperate sections called "Structural Analysis" and "Themes and motifs" instead of only the "Structural Analysis section". My reasoning is to give more emphasis to the "Themes and motifs" section which is better visually seperated and visible that way. This is important to make looking for the audio snippets as easy as possible.

I don't know what's the better name for the last section, References or Sources?

These are good ideas, which I agree with . . . almost entirely. My only nitpick would be to disagree about making the "Structural analysis" a heading separate from (but on the same level as) the "Theme and motif" section. Actually, I haven't quite got hold yet of what I'm looking for there. I really think both of these should be subheadings of a larger section, but I haven't yet figured out what to call it. The "Structural analysis" (in scores where the concept applies) would take a closer look at the fundamental layout of the score as one type of approach contrasted to another--i.e., a broad palette of underscoring (such as in Children of a Lesser God, for instance) as opposed to a leitmotif-based work from someone like JW. It would also take a look at some of the basic building blocks of the score (like the analysis of Goldsmith's use of the whole tone and tritone in his score for Alien, something else I plan to add to the article at some point).

We could also have a third subheading in this section for "Instrumentation" in order to point out any unique orchestral or synthetic approaches to the project. Just an idea.

Also, under "The Composing Process" (1.1), I like the idea of making those two points a subheading. But that should render "Commission" as 1.1.1, and "Temp tracking" as 1.1.2, in that order (since that's the order of the process). But you would then need a 1.1.3 that discusses the actual composing work itself. It could just be called "Composition"--my original 1.3. That lays everything out clearly.

I'm not inflexible on any of these thoughts, though. Ultimately I do agree that we should come up with a centralized template common to each score that contributors can use as a general outline for their articles.

In my opinion the biggest highlight of the wiki now are the small audio snippets of the thematic material. Great job adding the audio player template Uni. I always envisioned a perfect wiki where you can easily check out and listen to every thematic idea of a score in a fast and easy way. We can now offer that with the "Themes and motif section" and this may be one of the biggest reasons scorepedia will be successfull in the long run.

It's just such a convenient tool. Let's say you mention a motif and another person doesn't know it. Then you can just link to scorepedia and tell him/her to play the correct audio snippet of the motif. You even have a tracktitle and timestamps if he/she wants to check it out on cd.

The important thing though is the server load and space. Therefore i suggest to create ogg files with the lowest possible resolution of 94 kbs which only need about 200-300 kbs of space. That would mean about 3 Mb for a big score and should be justifiable even on the long run.

Well, I appreciate that. Actually, that came about because of an aborted attempt to post the themes as they appear on the music sheet--a couple of measures, treble clef, notes and/or chords, etc. That's how I wanted to do it, but my stupid and cheap notation program just plain refused to export simple images of that sort. I tied myself in knots trying to figure it out, until it popped into my head almost as an afterthought: "To bad I can't just stick in the short sections of music right out of the score." That got me thinking, and sent me back to Wikipedia (where I've learned all of the how-tos on making things work in a wiki), where I discovered the ogg files inserted in articles. I figured out how to make that work . . . and I'm glad I did, because I think it's far more effective than the musical images would've been, seeing as those would have required a knowledge of how to read music. These are easier to make and much more illustrative of the point.

So let's try to hammer out some of these details, and I'll try to summon the strength to get those foundational articles done. I swear haven't given up on this thing yet. . . .

- Uni

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Good to see some activity here again. I found some time recently to update the HP:CoS page I had been working on, and I just amassed a large collection of articles mentioning JW to use for reference for all articles going forward. I'm trying to cite as many sources as I can so that those interested in the score know where else to look for research material.

As far as the question of hosting audio clips, is there some kind of streaming service we could use (something like SoundCloud) to avoid hosting the files ourselves? I'm not sure whether short clips like we're talking about would violate any copyrights or not, but if this was possible it would ultimately save us a lot of server space.

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As far as the question of hosting audio clips, is there some kind of streaming service we could use (something like SoundCloud) to avoid hosting the files ourselves? I'm not sure whether short clips like we're talking about would violate any copyrights or not, but if this was possible it would ultimately save us a lot of server space.

As i said earlier:

The important thing though is the server load and space. Therefore i suggest to create ogg files with the lowest possible resolution of 94 kbs which only need about 200-300 kbs of space. That would mean about 3 Mb for a big score and should be justifiable even on the long run.

As far as copyright goes i guess it's within fair use and shouldn't cause problems with these 10 second snippets.

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Hi SF1, it sounds like you're talking about hosting the files on Scorepedia. I was wondering if we could avoid hosting any audio at all by posting to a streaming service instead.

To use a similar example, if you wanted to share a video online, you'd upload it to YouTube, and let them deal with hosting and bandwidth concerns, rather than hosting it on your own site. There may be a good equivalent out there for audio clips.

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I'm just reading the article on Alien. Can someone confirm the source of these facts:

'The final two cues recorded on the afternoon of February 23 involved the "alien effect" of echoplexing the Indian conch—an effect Scott loved.'

I thought this was a superball mallet rubbed on the soundboard of a piano, as in the Main Title from OUTLAND.

'To lend an appropriately alien atmosphere to the texture of the music, Goldsmith augmented the orchestra with a serpent, a shofar (an instrument he previously used in Planet of the Apes), an Australian didjeridu, steel drums, and a shankha (an Indian conch).'

There is no shofar or ram's horn specified in the written score, though there is a shawm (a medieval double reed). It's possible that it was overdubbed, and if so, I'd like to know the timestamps.

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Wow—I apologize. I missed seeing your questions before.

The source for nearly all the information in the article was Mike Matessino's notes for the Intrada release, which in turn borrowed heavily from the interviews of Goldsmith, Scott, and Rawlings conducted for the Special Edition DVD release of the film. The Intrada notes mentioned Scott's affection for the "alien effect" (the conch fed through the Echoplex) at least twice. It also listed the exotic instruments Goldsmith used, and—for the most part—mentioned in the track descriptions when and where the instruments were used. I'm afraid I don't have the time just now to look back through the whole thing to find specific timestamps for you. Your best bet would be to pick up the release for yourself, which I can assure you would be well worth the investment.

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Thanks for that Uni. I was wrong. Goldsmith must have been after a similar effect in OUTLAND but through different means.

I think the conch that was used create the effect in Alien was a Pacific conch (C. tritonis) pitched in B (a semitone below middle C) and does pitch bends down a whole tone to A and back up, coupled with an MXR Echoplex.

Also, see:

http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=j8eWAwAAQBAJ&pg=PR4&lpg=PR4&dq=Horns+and+Trumpets+of+the+World:+An+Illustrated+Guide++By+Jeremy+Montagu&source=bl&ots=EG379kK1e0&sig=ikIHjGEuNLm8EKk6PJbsa175wbM&hl=en&sa=X&ei=vCjSU9_9BJGA7QaC8YHgCw&ved=0CFAQ6AEwBQ#v=onepage&q=goldsmith&f=false

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I was going to ask if you were just speculating, or if you had a tangible reason for thinking so. Then I click on the link. Beauty find! I was going to add some new info to that page (I never knew about the Nostromo Enterprises CD), so I'll put that stuff in where it belongs. Thanks!

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Looking good! If you wanted to expand it, you could add more info about the recording sessions, including a photo or two. You could include the standard edition cover art and track listing. And I personally think Scorepedia presents a great opportunity to list the film order of the OST material, with timestamps.

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Nobody works in DOS anymore, man. Everything's Windows these days. It doesn't make any sense to go back to using an archaic—

Oh. I, uh . . . never mind. ;)

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Hello everyone.

As the activity in this thread and in the wiki itself has stalled I'd like to take the opportunity to make it attractive again by changing the look and feel of the wiki.

There are plenty of possible skins to chose from:

The skin should not only be visually appealing but also mobile friendly. Any thoughts?

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Hello everyone.

 

As a matter of fact the Scorepedia as a project didn't get off the ground. Currently there is only one active user (Justin Boggan) and I have no longer the time to support and maintenance the project in any capacity.

 

As of now I have set the wiki to read only with a description and link to this topic. If anyone wishes to continue the project, I'd be more than happy to transfer the database and associated files for further progress. Beside running the wiki alone it could be possible to transfer everything to Wikia.

 

If you are interested please get in touch with me.

 

Thanks.

 

- Marcus

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