The IDA (Instrument Data Assistant) is a new software for musical instruments.
It helps in collecting, showing and sharing data on all aspects of instruments and people surrounding them.
With this IDA connects differentiated biographies of instruments and people,
making you able to easily search and surf through their data.
Furthermore photo archives, measurement protocols, technical drawings (generated from the measurements) and archings can be managed.
All this data can be collected with IDA by yourself or imported from digitalized specialized literature or other IDA users.
Right now there is a IDA configuration for bowed string instruments,
soon there will be one for guitars and bows.
In it there are for each violin - or cello, viola etc. - 30 general properties like builder, owner, name and build year.
Furthermore about 25 photos, nearly 500 measured values and 34 defined archings.
With this IDA becomes (among others) a measurement standard for musical instruments,
while still staying open for extensions based on special wishes.
So everbody can have 30 or 3000 measurements in "his own" protocol
without completely losing the comparability of his data with other users.
Even to someone who is mainly interested in person data management IDA
offers a huge variety of details, flexibilty and easy research tools.
The Software IDA is available here as free evaluation version for all common Operating systems since October 30
There is a great variety of possible applications. IDA can be used for historical research, as a
back-end database for multi-media applications, for the publication of scientific works, for the
construction of replica instruments, for data exchange with other IDA users, and of course for
recording data on self-made instruments, or simply as a program to manage client and inventory
files. IDA is presently configured for stringed instruments but it can easily be adapted to other
types of instruments and objects.
IDA has been under development since 2011 as a joint project of myself, software programmer
Holger Pschera, and Markneukirchen violin maker Ekkard Seidl (see Development).
All major components can be viewed as screenshots here. Some features:
Screenshots here are still german: there will be some screenshots of the english IDA interface soon
Musical Instrument Data Manager:
Instrument Data Table with many search and filter commands
- Definable Data Fields for links to the artists, such as makers and owners, as well as to other
- Photo Database with configurable categories for instrument comparison views
Sets of Measurements may configured as needed, per type of instrument (there are presently 476
variables in the configuration for stringed instruments: for back, belly, dendro-tree-ring
chronology, F-Holes, rib, scroll, bridge)
Imaging Module for data sets: parameters in grid or vector graphics for pre-set positions. As
elsewhere, all variables may be configured as desired.
- Measurement and
Imaging Module for violin arch lines using the specially designed Heidenhain
IK220 measuring tool
- Import-Export Module for data exchange and/or sales with artists and clients
People Data Manager:
Data Table for persons
with plenty of search and filter commands
Freely assignable Data Fields
with links to other
(spouse, siblings, employees, etc.) and to
(produced, owned, played, repaired).
with complex data can be
displayed in a sophisticated way.
- The standard configuration uses 57 data fields
- Photo Database with categories that may be defined as needed
Historical data on thousands of professionals in the violin-making industry is now being recorded
from major reference works: Vogtländischer Geigenbau 1 & 2 (after Bernd Zöbisch), and Die
Geigen und Lautenmacher vom Mittelalter bis zur Gegenwart (Lütgendorff). This data may be
acquired together with the IDA, or added later.
Adjustments, Customizing, and Languages
- IDA programming code is not limited anywhere to any one language or type of instrument
Definitions of data fields, types of instruments, images, measurements, categories of photos, and
much more, may be
modified, and discarded
during active use.
An English version is already available.
- Extension of bowed string instrument version with bows
- Standard configuration set for guitars and other instrument types
- A multiuser version for museums, professional schools and companys working though the web browser.
- Persons Data Imaging: there will be biography and family tree graphic renditions that
are compiled from the raw data
- Multi-media Library: sounds, videos, etc., similar to modern digital photo albums
- till November: Release of Zöbisch and Lütgendorff
- many more standard weitere standard works of instrument building as digitalized IDA packages
- Global internet database for IDA users with web license
- prompt and zeitnahe und cost-effective realization of your concrete ideas, wishes and requirements in IDA
IDA is based on the Java Runtime Environment, therefor works on all operating
systems and runs stable on the following test systems:
Please address your questions, wishes, comments, orders to me by E-mail:
- Windows XP with 32 bit architecture
- Windows 7 with 64 bit architecture
- Windows 8.1 with 64 bit architecture
- Windows 10 with 64 bit architecture
- Linux Ubuntu (Version 12.04 on 32 bit, 14.04 on 64 bit)
- Max OS X 10.9.5 on iMac of 2013.
- Max OS X Lion 10.7.5 on MacBook Pro
- Max OS X 10.6.8