Archive for April, 2006

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.