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Title: Frequently Asked Questions

What is the purpose of this project?

There are several companies that provide audio identification services. Unfortunately, so far there was none of them published the fingerprint database and/or the source code for the server architecture. This project started as an experiment to implement a large-scale and fully open source audio fingerprinting solution, that can be used by other open source software without depending on proprietary software. The primary focus is on integration with the MusicBrainz music metadata database. There is a long way to go to reach the goal, but you can help by submitting more fingerprints, helping developing the software or just spreading the word.

Can the service identify short audio snippets?

No, it can't. The service has been designed for identifying full audio files. We would like to eventually support also this use case, but it's not a priority at the moment. Note that even when this will be implemented, it will be still intended for matching the original audio (e.g. for the purpose of tracklisting a long audio stream), not audio with background noise recorded on a phone.

Why do I need to log in to submit fingerprints?

We want to be able to track fingerprint submission for statistical and data quality reasons. If every user has an unique API key, we can generate list of top contributors and similar statistics. Additionally, if we need to do some data cleanup, it's much easier to do if we know the source of the data. You can use any OpenID provider to log in or you can use your existing MusicBrainz user account.

How can I know you will not do something bad with my MusicBrainz password?

We need the password to verify that you own the MusicBrainz account. Currently, MusicBrainz doesn't provide a way to do this without knowing the password on our side (OpenID, OAuth or a similar authentication scheme). Since the AcoustID database depends heavily on the MusicBrainz database, we really wanted to re-use existing user accounts. The only way to do this at the moment is to ask the user for both the username and password. We do not store the password anywhere, it is transmitted to our server over an SSL tunnel and it's sent to the MusicBrainz web service for authentication in a hashed form. After it's verified that the username and password match, we only store the username. The server code is open source, so you can check all this by yourself.

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