An app for practicing sight reading for guitar

Under this heading you can announce your own events and work products, including the publications of books, magazines, sheet music, CDs, videos, guitars you build, professional events like shows, training courses, festivals and competitions. Any member of the forum who wishes, may open a thread in this forum (but only one) using his/her name for the promotion of their efforts without limitation on the number of posts.
pr06lefs
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon May 06, 2019 6:02 pm

An app for practicing sight reading for guitar

Post by pr06lefs » Tue May 07, 2019 12:08 am

I've written a little app for practicing reading for the guitar - and for a few other stringed instruments. Its here:

https://www.music-reader.com/

The basic idea is it generates random notes on the staff, and you click on the fretboard to match those notes. As you match each note, it disappears and you get more random notes.

Its primarily made to be used on a phone, and its easiest to use with a touchscreen device. Good for those times you're on the bus or waiting in line someplace - you can get in a little reading practice on some part of the fretboard that needs work.

The interface is fairly simple, but if you dig in to the settings there are a number of features you might like.

- fret range - there's a long fretboard where you can select a range of frets to work on. Click on the short fretboard to match the notes on the staff.
- pitch detection, so that you can read using your instrument rather than clicking on the screen. The audio input only works in chrome, and I've only had it work well on computers as opposed to phones.
- musicxml. You can load musicxml files and read notes from them instead of random notes. Only single notes though - the works best with violin parts, or single note etudes, that kind of thing.
- randomness. There is a min and max step size. If min=max=1, then you're always going up or down one step in the scale. If min = 0 and max = 12, then you can have up to 12 note skips in the scale - over an octave if you're using a major scale. Bigger skips are harder. It might be interesting to set it to only 3rds, or 3rd and 4ths.
- key signatures. All the circle of 5ths ones - up to 6 sharps or flats.

Those are the highlights. There are some limitations!
- Only one note at a time for pitch detection. Pitch detection for more than one note is, as far as I know, still an area of research. Algorithms for this aren't publicly available.
- Only one note at a time is used in musicxml. So while the score may contain chords, only the top note will be shown in the app.
- No sense of time. All notes are whole notes. Right now the app is only for learning where the pitches are, not learning rhythms.

Lastly, all the settings are encoded in the URL of the app. So if you configure it a certain way and want to return to that later, bookmark the url.
Last edited by pr06lefs on Tue May 07, 2019 3:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
pogmoor
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 9796
Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2004 10:55 am
Location: Oxfordshire, UK

Re: An app for practicing sight reading for guitar

Post by pogmoor » Tue May 07, 2019 9:30 am

Good idea but I can't get it to work. iPad Safari and Mac Safari both give an error message:
getUserMedia threw exception :TypeError: navigator.getUserMedia is not a function. (In 'navigator.getUserMedia(dictionary, callback, error)', 'navigator.getUserMedia' is undefined)
and I can't get it to do anything in Opera, Vivaldi or Chrome on my iMac.
Eric from GuitarLoot
Renaissance and Baroque freak; classical guitars by Lester Backshall (2008), Ramirez (Guitarra del Tiempo 2017),
Yamaha (SLG 130NW silent classical guitar 2014).

Brian99
Posts: 129
Joined: Sat Jan 14, 2012 5:25 pm
Location: North Hampshire UK

Re: An app for practicing sight reading for guitar

Post by Brian99 » Tue May 07, 2019 11:17 am

Hi
working ok on chrome running on a PC -

I found it difficult to read the random scrolling notes as your reference keeps moving - as your eye scans between reading the note and clicking on the string.. (ie the notes scroll to the left) can you have a setting option to stop scrolling until all the notes have been read and then refresh with another set of random notes.. perhaps changing the note colour as you progress so its easy to see which is the next note to read..) Maybe its me but when I try and do some sight reading rather than reading each individual note I tend to also recognise the shapes the notes make relative to each other eg in a rising scale passage... having the notes static would help I think...

also how about a setting for ukulele? GCEA low log G not re-entrant

but good job and a useful tool..
cheers
Brian

pr06lefs
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon May 06, 2019 6:02 pm

Re: An app for practicing sight reading for guitar

Post by pr06lefs » Tue May 07, 2019 3:01 pm

pogmoor wrote:
Tue May 07, 2019 9:30 am
Good idea but I can't get it to work. iPad Safari and Mac Safari both give an error message:
getUserMedia threw exception :TypeError: navigator.getUserMedia is not a function. (In 'navigator.getUserMedia(dictionary, callback, error)', 'navigator.getUserMedia' is undefined)
and I can't get it to do anything in Opera, Vivaldi or Chrome on my iMac.
Are you trying to use the pitch detection part (ie 'start audio')? That only works on Chrome as far as I know. Assuming that's the problem, you can still use the app by clicking the fretboard rather than with the audio.

pr06lefs
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon May 06, 2019 6:02 pm

Re: An app for practicing sight reading for guitar

Post by pr06lefs » Tue May 07, 2019 3:13 pm

Brian99 wrote:
Tue May 07, 2019 11:17 am
having the notes static would help I think...
Something to consider, especially if I start supporting more notation features like measures. I like seeing the whole measure that I'm reading.
Brian99 wrote:
Tue May 07, 2019 11:17 am
also how about a setting for ukulele? GCEA low log G not re-entrant
I might do that! Is that a widely used tuning for people who play single notes on uke? I'm also interested in cavaquinho which has several tunings.

Brian99
Posts: 129
Joined: Sat Jan 14, 2012 5:25 pm
Location: North Hampshire UK

Re: An app for practicing sight reading for guitar

Post by Brian99 » Tue May 07, 2019 3:55 pm

Hi
yes C6 low G (or linear tuning) is most common for folk who play fingerstyle.. and may also play guitar.. its the same as a capo on the 5th fret.

low G allows for a wider range of notes of course, and is therefore more applicable to reading notation rather than strumming the chord symbols

the re-entrant C6 tuning is exactly the same except the 4th string (G) is tuned an octave higher.. both are common..

there are other tunings as well, I also play ukulele tuned in fifths like a cello
Brian

pr06lefs
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon May 06, 2019 6:02 pm

Re: An app for practicing sight reading for guitar

Post by pr06lefs » Mon May 13, 2019 7:07 pm

Just made a custom tuning feature. I have a little subreddit for this app, I started a thread about it there.

Here's a GCEA uke tuning. With this one you play an octave down compared to the written notes, like on guitar. Is that correct?

Return to “Members' Announcements”