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DiscDeacon is a part of a much larger personal project & learning exercise. It will ultimately be the base for another music library archive. The development of this library, through the years has taught me an enormous amount including MP3, FLAC, & Wav formats, CD layout & data encoding, J2EE, and countless Java frameworks. So, in that end it has been vastly useful. The actual success of this project and future ones has yet to be seen.

Now, I can already hear people groaning about how there is no need for another music library, especially with the rampant success of ITunes. However, I have always been a little bit compulsive about things and think that every program I have tried was missing something. Specifically, I have the following requirements:

  • I do not want to be forced to manage or listen to songs, I want albums.
  • I want 100% accurate, archival copies of my CDs. Bit for bit accuracy is required.
  • If possible, I want uncompressed audio data, or at least lossless encoding.
  • File metadata is not the best way to store information. It is often wrong and pollutes the file with data I don't think should be there.
  • MP3 files, in addition to other shortcomings, do not index into a file very well. Seeking with most audio players into a large file is very inaccurate, especially if you are trying to find the beginning of a song in the middle of an album.
So, the any library with these requirements would have to be able to take a very large file, and find the exact byte position of a track start time in an album, down to the frame (1/75s). This is the primary job of DiscDeacon. How and where this data is actually stored is work for another project.

As part of managing albums, I do not believe in file metadata (e.g. ID3 tags). The file should be audio only -- other data should be held outside the file somehow. One way to do that is with cuesheets. Cuesheets store the time of the track positions for a file (album) along with the artist and album information. Cuesheets also allow programs such as AccurateRip to make identical CD copies by using the cuesheet to recreate the q subchannel data of a CD. Hence, DiscDeacon's heavy focus on cuesheets.

Note that none of the above precludes standard 1 file / 1 song organization schemes. DiscDeacon's cuesheet utilities will work just as well in that situation.