RISM at IAML, Part 1: Muscat – (almost) ready to go

For RISM insiders, Muscat will be the must-have item this fall! Our new cataloging program was a topic of discussion at the recent IAML congress in Rome.

A group of developers has been at work for about three years to create a new cataloging program called Muscat, which will replace the current program, Kallisto. The group is made up of Laurent Pugin and Rodolfo Zittelini from RISM Switzerland and Stephan Hirsch and Harald Wingerter from the RISM Central Office.

Also involved in the development process are members of the Coordinating Committee and Roland Schmid-Hensel from the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin. They have tested each stage of development and made valuable suggestions about improving the program.

Work has progressed to the point where we are hoping to release the program this fall.

Muscat offers many advantages


  • Muscat is browser based and platform independent. It can be used on any computer – PC or Mac; laptop, desktop, or tablet device – with an internet connection.

  • Muscat is an open source program and will be freely available for anyone to develop for other projects.

  • The data are structured using MARC21. Exchanging data with libraries and other projects will be easier.

  • Current Kallisto users will be happy to hear that records are displayed in their entirety and the music incipit is no longer separate.

  • It is easy to create versions of Muscat in different languages. Muscat will initially be available in English, French, German, and Italian. Other translations are welcome; please let us know if you can help.

  • Earlier versions of Muscat were used by RISM UK and RISM Switzerland and the newest version is already being used in Switzerland. The program has thus proven to be fully functional and major programming issues should not come up.


Current state of Muscat:

  • All Kallisto functions have been integrated into Muscat, including displaying the incipit in the input phase, the link to authority files (personal names, institutions, secondary literature), and access to cataloging guidelines.

  • The guidelines are currently being revised and integrated into Muscat.

  • A beta version is currently available for testing by current RISM contributors.


  • The test phase will go until September 5, 2016. The Central Office has already sent all Kallisto users login information to the test version of Muscat.

  • Workshops in Frankfurt as well as online guidance via detailed instructions, tutorials, and videos will be offered.

  • The switch to Muscat will take place at the beginning of November.

  • Please note: Due to technical reasons, a concrete date will be set when Kallisto users will stop using Kallisto and on the next day they will use Muscat. On and after the day of the switchover, it will not be possible to continue work on Kallisto.

  • After Muscat is released, we will be happy to grant access to anyone new who wants to start contributing to RISM.


Feedback at the IAML congress was very positive and we are looking forward to the Muscat release.

Catégorie : New at RISM

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Richard, 01-08-16 16:14:
Dr. Ward, Where can I find a copy of RISM cataloguing guidelines or will that not be available until Muscat is released. Please reply to my email address. Thanks. R
Jennifer Ward (RISM), 29-07-16 11:05:
Dr. Haefer, thanks for your kind offer! The beta version will be released soon (web-based, works on Macs as well as PCs) and we will be in touch with you regarding creating a version in Spanish.
J. Richard Haefer, Ph. D., 28-07-16 22:42:
I would be happy to work on a Spanish version of Muscat. I am currently working with FileMakerPro with apps available for Mac, PC, web, smart phone, iPads, etc.

Can I access a Beta version for Mac to see how it is working?

Jennifer Ward (RISM), 22-07-16 11:12:
The kind folks at Papeles de Música have translated this into Spanish:

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