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Hyperlinks to Specific Areas in MP3 Files?
basilides
post Dec 24 2012, 01:35
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I am worried that this is not the correct forum to ask this question, so please be patient with me due to my ignorance, but there are many audio experts on this forum, so this may be a good place to start getting some information. Or perhaps if this in an inappropriate question, you could kindly directly me to where my question could be answered.

Is this possible?

I have a certain mp3 file that contains numerous songs and speeches and whatnot. I would like to hyperlink to certain songs (not to the entire file) from hyperlinks in another program (say, MS WORD or EXCEL). The hyperlink will link to a particular part of the file that contains the recording. There will be other hyperlinks to various other parts of the file as well.

Of course I could create separate files by cutting the recording into individual files that could be linked to, but this would be too time consuming.

Thank you for your indulgence.
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saratoga
post Dec 24 2012, 02:28
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You'd have to look at the office help documentation, but my guess is no. Office's support for media files is rudimentary at best.
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basilides
post Dec 24 2012, 04:38
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Thanks, but perhaps I should have been clearer. My question is not specifically about WORD or EXCEL or whatever, that is, where the hyperlinks start from or are located, but my question is this:

Is there some way, some audio program, some tool, that permits sections / locations of the audio file (songs, speeches, whatever) to be hyperlinked? So if I want to create a hyperlink to "Speech 23" located on an certain but long MP3 file, I can indicate perhaps the start point and the end point (selecting the location would save time), then hyperlink from outside the mp3 file to this specific place on the MP3 file.

I have a feeling that this will be difficult or impossible to accomplish at present, but I am open to suggestions or advice.
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saratoga
post Dec 24 2012, 04:46
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QUOTE (basilides @ Dec 23 2012, 23:38) *
Thanks, but perhaps I should have been clearer. My question is not specifically about WORD or EXCEL or whatever, that is, where the hyperlinks start from or are located, but my question is this:


Your question is specific to whatever program you use to play the file. If its word, then word has to be able to do it. Its not possible to have some 2nd program give other software the ability to seek to certain parts of an mp3 automatically.
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slks
post Dec 24 2012, 05:28
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One way could be by using YouTube. YouTube lets you create a link that will start playing the video from a specific point.

Short of using YouTube, or a similar service, or creating your own competing web player - there is no way.


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nu774
post Dec 24 2012, 06:10
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MOV(quicktime) and MP4 support data reference to outer resource (which can be a URL or local file), and they can contain MP3 audio. Although I don't know how well data reference feature of MP4 is supported by existing software (probably not many).

In case of MOV, it can be achieved by simple trimming and saving to "reference movie" using QuickTime player (pro version). This "trimming" is not actually done to the original file. Instead, the edit information required for trimming is stored to the reference movie.
A reference movie contains all the structure except for the actual media samples, which is usually self-contained in the movie file itself.
Of course, if you want to open such a reference movie from hyperlink shown on some app, it must support opening reference movie (via QuickTime plugin or something).

Another example I know of is APL of Monkey's audio(APE). It is conceptually a simple link to sub portion of an audio file, and can contain APE tags.
It was designed for APE file, but it can be technically extended/applied to any audio format.
However, as far as I know fb2k is the only example which allows you to use it in such a manner, not to mention of "hyperlinking" it.

This post has been edited by nu774: Dec 24 2012, 06:24
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basilides
post Dec 24 2012, 06:57
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Not only YouTube but bloggingheads.tv, which has links to specific portions of the taped programs. Very handy -- wish this were possible with audio tapes, such as MP3 files or the like.

Thanks for all the help and advice.
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mjb2006
post Dec 26 2012, 05:21
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Just to add some technical detail -

What comes after a "#" in a URL is a "fragment identifier": text which serves to uniquely name a piece of the resource identified by the preceding part of the URL. In the spec which defines a type of resource, there can be some guidance for how its fragment identifiers are to be formatted and interpreted.

The HTML spec is a good example; it says that in the URL of an HTML document, the fragment identifier corresponds to the name or ID of an "anchor" element in the document's HTML markup. It is up to the HTML document author to put named anchors in the document; the spec does not provide for jumping to arbitrary points like the 5th paragraph, the 250th word, 67%, or whatever. And it is up to the HTML document reading software ("user agent") to interpret and handle fragment identifiers according to the spec. The software is free to do other things, as well, such as supporting jumping to the 250th word, but that would be features unique to that software.

YouTube's video URLs aren't really pointing to a particular type of resource governed by a public specification, so they can do what they want with them. The URL refers to a piece of video content, something that is presented differently depending on context. YouTube controls the player app in the web browser, so they can make it interpret the URL however they want. So they have it such that their player will interpret a particular name-value pair in the fragment ID as the time index in the video that the player should skip ahead to. That's not a function of the URL, it's a feature of their video player.

There are specs for all kinds of resources, including specific video and audio formats. Rarely, if ever, do these standards ever cover anything having to do with URLs. So most of the time, URL fragment identifiers have no defined format, and thus, no expected interpretation. In other words, you can't expect MP3 players, when fed a URL pointing to an MP3, to handle that URL's fragment ID (if any) in the way YouTube does...unless the player has been specially designed to do so.
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Rigapada
post Dec 26 2012, 05:54
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QUOTE (basilides @ Dec 24 2012, 06:05) *
Is this possible?

I have a certain mp3 file that contains numerous songs and speeches and whatnot. I would like to hyperlink to certain songs (not to the entire file) from hyperlinks in another program (say, MS WORD or EXCEL). The hyperlink will link to a particular part of the file that contains the recording. There will be other hyperlinks to various other parts of the file as well.

Thank you for your indulgence.


Please check the site http://www.daisy.org/ for details of the standard for daisy books. Essentially, Daisy books are meant for Visually Handicapped persons to navigate in audio books. It is possible to have a full audio book as a single file, with an XML file giving navigational info. One can navigate from chapter to chapter, and in chapter from heading to heading upto a number of levels. One has to use a player which can interpret the XML file and provide navigation. Both software players and hardware players are available. One can use one or several mp3 files for each book. OBI 2.5 is one of the programs which can make Daisy books. The book may consist of lessons or songs as long they are in Wav or MP3 format. A CD of a Daisy book can be played in a normal CD player as a normal set of music files, but in a Daisy aware player, full navigation is possible.

Hope this will be useful.

--Sarma.


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