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Creating Printed Music Automatically
June 1996 (vol. 29 no. 6)
pp. 61-68

Some of today's music-score editing programs are capable of producing publication-quality scores. However, to produce scores as good as those music engravers and copyists create, the users must understand the positioning of many notational elements. However, most users of notational software have little or no music copyist training. This article presents a partial solution to this problem: How can users with little or no copyist training create publication-quality printed music? The solution, a program called MusicEase, applies constraints to notational information the user enters, automatically arranging graphical elements "correctly." This can also speed up the notation process, since the copyist doesn't have to make as many decisions or enter as much data. MusicEase incorporates a constraint-based technique to calculate the complex interaction of notational elements. Basically, it is a WYSIWYG editor with a menu system for novice users and keyboard shortcuts for advanced users. It imports and exports standard Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) files. MusicEase has been in use at the University of Colorado at Boulder and other places for several years now. According to user feedback, the word-processing paradigm and constraint-based approach work reasonably well for many routine, uncomplicated, notational tasks.

Citation:
Gary M. Rader, "Creating Printed Music Automatically," Computer, vol. 29, no. 6, pp. 61-68, June 1996, doi:10.1109/2.507633
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