Google Summmer of Code 2017, 2 months done, 1 to go !

• Jul 29, 2017 - 08:43

As you may know, MuseScore is part of Google Summer of Code 2017. During the past two months, we had 4 students working on 4 projects to make MuseScore better ! Let me give you an overview of the current status and what to expect in the next month.


divya-urs, mentored by Marc Sabatella, worked on improving accessibility in MuseScore 3. Her first job was to make it easier to navigate through every element of a score with the keyboard. She delivered a nice solution that you can try now in the master nightlies. She also wrote some code to enable the navigation through the palette with the keyboard, her pull request is under review but will also end up in the nightlies. And she also worked on a way to assign shortcut for each cell in the palette. No pull request yet, but there will be one soon! You can follow development on divya-urs' blog.

Timeline, an overview of your score

What about a way to quickly navigate an orchestral score? A way to see at a glimpse the key signature or time signature changes, the empty and non empty measures by instruments? Look no further, JoshuaBonn1, mentored by ericfontainejazz, has made great progress in the implementation of the timeline. You can try it in the master nightlies and Joshua is waiting for your feedback in the Technology Preview forum where he posted several questions to refine his first implementation. He is already working on a better implementation. You can follow the progress on Joshua's blog, you will also find some screenshots!

Startup wizard and shortcut management

If you are using MuseScore with a non-QWERTY keyboard, you might know the frustration of reading about a shortcut in the handbook and the shortcut not working on your keyboard. Aryamanvinchhi, mentored by Jojo-Schmitz, started to solve this problem. When MuseScore starts for the first time, it will now ask you several questions, your language, your keyboard layout, your "music level" and it will try to pick the right shortcuts and workspace for you. Of course, you will still be able to customize everything but we hope that it will improve the first experience of MuseScore. Aryaman already made some progress and you can find a first iteration on this startup wizard in the master nightlies, dealing with shortcuts only. He worked mainly on the machinery and we need *your* feedback to define the right shortcut for your keyboard layout. An improved version of the startup wizard is in the work. You can follow the progress on Aryaman's blog

Crash reporting

In order to improve MuseScore stability, it would be great to have a way to capture crashes and send them to a central server where developers could go through them. nickhatz, mentored by me (lasconic) took up this challenge. He investigated breakpad and integrated with MuseScore. Unfortunately, he took several other commitments during the past two months, including a choir tour and a mandatory course he disclosed only recently. His progress were slow, despite a daily IRC meeting. I had to fail nickhatz after these two months working together, so he can focus on his course. He expressed the willing to keep on working on the project, on his own schedule, once he passed his final exam. So we might see some more progress in the coming months. You can follow the progress on nickhatz's blog.

Your feedback on any of these projects is very welcome ! You can comment here, on each blog post, or join us on the developer IRC channel #musescore on


Comment & "feeling" about the timeline, after some tests and using.
For: nice design, and nice cyan color. I support this display.
Against: big devourer of space. Result: score truncated, "eaten", more and more. With other panels (Inspector, palettes, selection filter), the score is now reduced as a skin of grief, almost like something secondary, appearing in a small skylight. It't a limit ("c’est un comble", in French!)
Other limit: timeline doesnt’ show the pages unlike the Navigator (useful for me to identify and go directly to the page 10 or 15 etc.)

In reply to by herrlein

Wouldn't it be more economical to make it available to other DAWs, as there are multiple free versions, including Open Source-d ones rather than reinvent the wheel?
I prefer software that does one thing and does it well. And it also links with other tools nicely in a tool-chain, if that's what I need.

In reply to by mistery

Actually, I think that there is no example of notation software that could actually do it n an easy and inspirational way. Having a kind of event recorder, or snippets recorder with a piano roll or timeline would be cool. The snippets could be stored in a kind of session, like pinning the snippets in a desktop for using in a bigger piece. This could be better accomplished in a separated pane from the main notation window, I think, for an optional usage. Or just one more way to enter notes, like the new ones, that are very intuitive and cool. Actually, I think that Musescore way of inputing notes are now more intuitive than Finale's. Congrats ! I really enjoy Musescore, but this comment is about something I dream in a notation package.

In reply to by herrlein

MuSE fulfills this purpose nicely (for Linux users anyway), and it was at one point developed by some of the same people as MuseScore. In fact, MuseScore was originally spun out of an attempt to place a notation editor in MuSE! I think there might also be a piano roll editor in MuseScore somewhere.

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