Piano Chords OS X widget

Posted on April 2, 2006, under general, music.

A long long time ago, when Netscape 2 was cutting edge, before AJAX, before IE won the browser wars and while many people still called Javascript “livescript”, I wrote a ridiculously complex Javascript implementation of a piano tutor, called “Virtual Piano Chords”. For something that I last touched in 1998, it’s kind of amazing that it still works in any browser I try these days. A google search for Virtual Piano Chords shows a load of websites still using it, one of the more faithful examples is here.

The code isn’t great (it would have been a lot better if switch statements and enums had of worked), but the music theory is pretty solid, and since I was studying music theory at the time, it was a great help for exploring new chords, enharmonics, scales and (my favourite) modes. And now, 8 years later, Alexander Griekspoor has created an OS X widget based on the work. Cool!

The PianoChord widget, true to OS X form, looks great and it’s got all of the Chord shapes. From experience these apps can be very useful for exploring inversions and trying to put a slightly different spin on an accompaniment or harmony piece.

6 Replies to "Piano Chords OS X widget"


loach  on May 13, 2006

I have searched hours upon hours for a download of this script.Is there anyway it’s still available?I would like to use it on a website I am currently developing for non-commercial use.I will give full credit to the author.Thank-you.


stefiop  on May 24, 2006

Very enjoyable nice little great piece of work ! Now, using the keyboard to select the root, is there a way to have Piano Chords playing the chord only once ? Thanks, SI


David Seagal  on April 24, 2007

Hi Colm,

I am interested in using your Virtual Piano Chords on my website for my viewer’s benefit.

Please let me if I can use it and how I can install it.

Thanks a lot.

David Seagal


David Seagal  on April 24, 2007


Sorry, just saw a typo on my email as I was typing to you.

Correct email address is instantpiano@email.com

Thank you,
David Seagal


Lloyd  on January 15, 2008

I wanted to know if your “Virtual Piano Chords” script is still available. I’m teaching myself to play. Thanks!



Ravenhood  on December 22, 2008


I’m very interested in using your ‘Virtual Piano Chords’ script on my website.

It’s a non-commercial website.

Please let me know if I can use it.

Morten Ravn

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