Audio TF Telco

21 Jun 2018


George, Daniel, Weck, zheng_xu, Avneesh, wendyreid, marisa, romain, Hadrien, rkwright, tzviya, dkaplan3, gpellegrino, Garth, duga


<scribe> scribenick: rkwright

wendy: This is the first meeting so let's try to characterize audio books and start the discussion there.

george: I have participated in some standards activity in this area. This is back in the days of cassette tapes (!).
... They naturally retained their position in the book.
... Then in the late 90s DAISY promulgated a set of standards that are still in use today, including the synchronized audio tracking.
... This effort continues today as an ANSII effort.

tzviya: Are we considering both audio books as well as all synchronized audio packages (?)

bendugas: I don't have as much experience in this area as others, but with experience in putting together such products,
... but the key that end-users expect is that you open it and it starts playing audio

avneesh: Note that users may not realize that it is synchronized audio. They're just listening
... But how many sub-standards do we want? Is out goal to create one standard or a set?

garth: Seems like this TF should focus on audio-books per se and not synchronized audio as such
... Given the size and importance of pure audio books, I think we should focus on pure audio books now. Whether
... the publishers accept the proposals is another aspect

<marisa> https://github.com/w3c/sync-media-pub/blob/master/drafts/functional-requirements.md#pre-recorded-audio-narration-only-no-text-document

marisa: Synchronized Media CG is looking into this area as well, so it is hoped that we can work together and not end up with two different standards

<romain> +1

marisa: Here is a link to DAISY's requirements

zheng_xu: Agreed that is is important to define exactly what we mean by "audio book"? Is it a pure (listen-only) book or read-along, etc.?
... At this point, there are little or no standards to guide one

tzviya: Agreed with Garth (!) that we need to work within any existing standards, infoset, etc. that have already been promulgated by the W3C
... We DON'T want to invent something new.

wendy: Consumers are being server by thinking as audio-books as a purely audio experience (neglecting accessibility, navigation, etc.)
... We should be proceeding on the basis that having a consumer-oriented "audio book" is the first step.

George: Understands the need for a "pure" audio file, but having additional support for TOC, etc. would be excellent
... Currently, there are people creating excellent "audio books" but they are doing though a cumbersome pipeline. Our job won't be successful unless we also provide tooling for building it.
... In addition it would be good if the result of the process could be an EPUB-like zip file as well as some way to put it on CD

bendugas: From Kobo's perspective, having a standard would be excellent but how does an "audio book" related to other forms, such as fixed-layout?

wendyreid: I think we all agree that we want to base this work on web publications.
... We need to support the audio-only books, works for the publishers and is implementable by RS.
... I believe we have a consensus that we want to base it on WP.
... Should support pure audio, but also synchronized audio.

<Zakim> Hadrien, you wanted to talk about structural properties issues with synchronized audio

Hadrien: By leveraging WP, we get a TOC for free
... If we put these resources both HTML and audio, in the reading order, then that would be a good first step

avneesh: I think we should be careful not to place too much emphasis on "simple" audio books as even simple audio books have some complexities

tzviya: Although I agree with avneesh about the desire to support synchronized media the standards aren't really there
... question whether we should be aligned with other efforts (e.g. CG)

marisa: Currently looking at work going on in other groups to see if there is some synergy without adopting overly-complex solutions.

deborah: Saying "audio only" is somewhat misleading since we really mean audio PLUS various other metadata, etc. that comes with WP

wendyreid: Our first step then should be perhaps to define what we mean by "pure (or basic) audio books

<garth> +1

<dkaplan3> +1

<tzviya> +1

<laurentlemeur> +1

<zheng_xu> +1

<George> ++1

<General consensus on this>

<romain> +1

laurentlemeur: I have spoken with French publishers and they are ready to work with us to provide content and feedback
... Agree with George that we also need to provide some tooling and guidance on creating such content

tzviya: Before we start creating prototypes I think we need to have a spec first. It is important to loop in publishers and RS, but we need to be clear on what is our job and what is the job of other parts of the ecosystem
... We should talk to the BG about cooperation

<duga> +1

avneesh: Note that DAISY already has a document outline their minimum requirements for audiobooks

duga: Where do media-overlay ebooks in scope for this group?

wendyreid; We don't think that is key for the initial effort though it should be addressed down the road

aveneesh: The key minimum features include TOC, <something>, <something>

marisa: A key part if the ability to address fine grain than simply MP3 files.

<wendyreid> https://github.com/w3c/wpub/blob/master/experiments/audiobook/flatland.json

<zheng_xu> Do we have use cases for audio book?

wendyreid: Hadrien has provided a sample of what a simple audio book might look like

hadrien: Note that this prototype is based on the specifications we have been working on as part of the WP
... There is no TOC in this sample, and it simple starts the book the beginning. But achieving finer-grained navigation would be feasible

<Avneesh> we also need metadata to inform that this is audio book.

<Hadrien> Avneesh: there's "@type": "Audiobook"

zheng_xu: We need to also think about what requirements might exist that are NOT covered by WP

garth: This prototype looks great. Thanks Hadrien!
... It needs some tweaks (no alternates, TOC) but is an excellent start.

Hadrien: I included the alternates because in streaming format audio books you need these alternates
... For the TOC, it should be a straight-forward extension of what has already been done.

wendyreid: Anyone who has ideas or suggestions for going forward, please circulate them to the group.

Summary of Action Items

Summary of Resolutions

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Present: George Daniel Weck zheng_xu Avneesh wendyreid marisa romain Hadrien rkwright tzviya dkaplan3 gpellegrino Garth duga
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