SIP Newsletter #11

Brussels, May 17th, 2003

- SipXML
- SipSib
- SipFind
- Windows2000 support

Dear SIP user,

News from your engraving software supplier is rather limited this time and it will continue to be thin for the next couple of months because most of my time is spent in the development of the MusicXML to Score converter.


Progress is steady. A separate page has been opened where you can see the newest promising results.


Three changes to this program:

(1) correction of placement of instrument names.
When a staff was indented and preceded by an instrument name, that name would be linked to the first non-indented staff. This has been corrected.

(2)vertical distance between staves.
Until now, Code08Par10 was used to simulate the exact Sibelius distance between staves. This distance is expressed in inches from a staff to bottom staff 1.
Now there is an option which computes the vertical distance in Code08Par04 as an offset to the default. The user has the choice to use either method.

(3) processing of whole rests.
While properly working in most cases, additional development was needed to process some uncommon situations. The following article provides details:

Conversion of the whole rest from Sibelius to Score
The EPS output of Sibelius represents a whole rest by a character from their Opus character set. The following is an example taken from an EPS file.

(\267) 0.000000 1.000000 1.000000 1551 5288 128 /Opus ScaledChar

SipSib, the converter to Score, is interested in some of these nine elements. The code \267 represents the rest character. The coordinates on a printed page are given as 1551 for the x-axis and 5288 for the y-axis. The size is represented by 128.

There is hence no information on the duration of this rest. Like in printed music, the duration of a whole rest needs to be deducted from the context. The converter will find the time signature which last occurred before this rest and knows from that what the duration is.

In some time signatures, the whole rest can however mean exactly four beats. Consider a piece in 8/2 where there is a whole rest which is followed by a whole note followed by another whole rest and another whole note. In total there are sixteen beats so this is a proper measure. Sibelius allows you to enter such whole rests in 8/2 or 16/2 but not in 8/4.

Unfortunately, Score will center the whole rests which in this specific case it should not. In this example, the two rests will be centered at the identical spot and the total duration will no longer be 16 beats but 12.

The trick is to replace the whole rest (Code2Par5 = -2) by a half rest (Code2Par5 = -1) and move it up so that it appears as if it hangs on the line above (Code2Par4 = 1.14). The duration must be set to 4 (Code2Par7 = 4). We call such a rest a 'dummy whole rest'. It looks like a whole rest and Score will not attempt to center it.

So while a whole rest appears alone in a measure it is safe to center it and give it the duration of the current time signature, the rules for positioning and duration are different if it does not occur alone.

SipSib functions correctly when there is one voice in such bar.
The following criteria must hence be fulfilled:
- the whole rest must occur in a bar of which the duration is superior to 2/1 (eight beats);
- the rest must not be alone in the bar.

Results will however be unpredictable when there are more than one voice in a bar with one or more 4-beat whole rests.

European style rests
These are not supported by SipSib as I have not been given proper test samples. If it is as all possible in Sibelius to make those rest, I will attempt to include them when representative test material is presented.

An exception is made for the 2-measure rest which in Sibelius occurs as character \362. It is properly converted to a Code2Par5 = -12 with the correct duration in Code2Par7.


This program has now been made available for everybody, licensed SIP user or not. Download it with the installation instructions.

Windows 2000 support

Calling Score from SIP with a filename was a problem when installed on Windows2000.
It is a Microsoft problem really but I made a workaround.
Contact me personally to get your upgrade for free.

Long live SCORE!

Jan de Kloe