Timeliner: a Music teaching and learning use case for IIIF

Maria Whitaker - Indiana University (USA)

Presentation type: Lightning talk


Indiana University, in collaboration with Digirati, is using IIIF specs in its implementation of a newer version of the now retired Variations Audio Timeliner, an audio annotation and analysis tool for creating and labeling bubble diagrams. These diagrams, called Timelines, can be used to navigate music or other audio for detailed study.

The bubbles correspond to musical segments and serve as visual cues that help the quick identification of elements that recur or relate in the large-scale formal structure of a musical piece. Music instructors can provide their analyses to students, helping them develop critical listening skills. Students can also interact with the tool and create their own timeline.

The new Timeliner is a different type of IIIF client given its music teaching and learning use case. IIIF Presentation API v.3, which incorporated support for A/V content, is well suited for the representation of the Timeliner annotations.

At Indiana University, the audio content is stored in the Avalon Media System, which also provides the discovery and access to the content. The integration of Avalon and the Timeliner is facilitated by the IIIF Presentation v3 and Auth v1 APIs. For Auth, we implemented the Probe service suggested in https://github.com/IIIF/api/issues/1290.

This presentation will include a demo of the tool.


  • Annotation, including full-text or academic use cases,
  • Audio/Visual use cases for IIIF