Command: rid


rid – eliminate specified Humdrum record types


`` rid [-dgiltuDGILTU] [inputfile ...] ``


The rid command allows the user to eliminate specified types of Humdrum records (lines) from the input stream. Depending on the options selected, rid will eliminate global comments, local comments, interpretations, duplicate exclusive interpretations, tandem interpretations, data records, data records consisting of just null tokens (null data records), empty global or local comments, empty interpretations, or any combination of these record types.

Humdrum comments are records that begin with an exclamation mark (!). Local comments begin each active spine with a single exclamation mark, whereas gobal comments begin with two exclamation marks (!!) at the beginning of the record. A global comment consisting of only two exclamation marks is a null global comment. If a local comment record contains only single exclamation marks in each spine, it is dubbed a null local comment.

Humdrum interpretations are records that begin with an asterisk (*). Tandem interpretations begin each active spine with a single asterisk, whereas exclusive interpretations begin with an asterisk and have at least one active spine beginning with two asterisks. If each active spine contains only a single asterisk, the record is dubbed a null interpretation.

Records that are not comments or interpretations are deemed to be data records. Null tokens are data tokens consisting of just the period character (.). A data record containing only null tokens (separated by tabs) is a null data record.

A duplicate exclusive interpretation is an exclusive interpretation that repeats the name of an interpretation that is already active for a given spine. If a spine has not been terminated, there is frequently little need to indicate (again) the active interpretation for a given spine. (An exception occurs when the user wants the data to be processed as discontinuous – such as avoiding calculating pitch intervals between the last note of one piece and the first note of a subsequent piece.)


The rid command provides the following options:

-h displays a help screen summarizing the command syntax
-D remove all data records
-d remove null data records
-G remove all global comments
-g remove null global comments
-I remove all interpretation records
-i remove null interpretation records
-L remove all local comments
-l remove null local comments
-T remove all tandem interpretations
-U remove unnecessary (duplicate) exclusive interpretations
-u same as -U

Options are specified in the command line.

In general, upper-case options eliminate all records of a given type, whereas the corresponding lower-case options eliminate only null records (devoid of signifiers) for a given record type.


The following examples illustrate the use of rid. Consider the following input file: ````

!! `rid’ example !! **abc **xyz *tand *em 12 . . . !local !comments * * *x *x **xyz **abc ! ! . 34 *- *-

The following command:

`` rid -dlu input``

will eliminate all null data records, all null local comments, and any unnecessary (duplicate) exclusive interpretations: ````

!! `rid’ example !! **abc **xyz *tand *em 12 . !local !comments * * *x *x . 34 *- *-

Alternatively, the command:

`` rid -DGLiT input``

will eliminate all data records, all global and local comments, all null interpretations, and all tandem interpretations: ````

**abc **xyz
*x *x
**xyz **abc
*- *-


Removing Humdrum interpretation records will render the file inconsistent with the Humdrum representation syntax. Further processing of such a file with the Humdrum tools will be impossible.


DOS 2.0 and up, with the MKS Toolkit. OS/2 with the MKS Toolkit. UNIX systems supporting the Korn shell or Bourne shell command interpreters, and revised awk (1985).