Here are bugs I encountered while playing the three bootcamps, in no particular order, and with my perceived degree of severity (Windows 10 laptop, connected to an ARIUS electronic piano).
- In the playing screen
1. (nitpick) Sometimes, focus is lost and the app while playing, and pressing the SPACEBAR does not stop not restart the song. Clicking may restore normal behavior.
How to reproduce: unknown... play awhile??
2. (nitpick) Sometimes, focus behaves weirdly while playing, and pressing the SPACEBAR activates its effect twice (starting AND stopping the song, or vice versa). Clicking may restore normal behavior.
How to reproduce: unknown... play awhile??
3. (PRETTY ANNOYING) Triplet notation does not appear (namely, in the intermediate bootcamp exercises).
How to reproduce: Set the notation verbosity to lowest (by clicking the eighth note icon next to the lightning icon).
4. (PRETTY ANNOYING) Swung eighths do not play as advertised. Exercises with the notation "swung eighths" does not make the eighths swung, either when played in demo mode or when aiming for a perfect score.
5. (PRETTY ANNOYING) In the Etta James "At Last" Dominant 7h Advanced bootcamp exercise, the start of the song is off-sync, meaning playing the first note on-beat for exercises 5 and 6 result in an error, unless played early. Maybe this is a side-effect of how the accompaniment was synced with the exercise?
6. (nitpick) When a song finishes, the statistics (along with the score in percent) appears, but the keyboard interface is different... Essentially, I may want to immediately restart the song, knowing that I failed it (e.g. by pressing the space bar, or clicking the play button twice), but because the statistics window blocks both these options (when I don't react fast enough), I am effectively interrupted, and have to move the mouse to the "retry" button instead.
7. (kinda annoying) Left-hand missed notes appear as right-hand notation, in the grand-staff, when the note played is high-pitch enough. This makes it difficult to tell exactly what I played. I reckon a simple algorithm to determine the handedness of the note played would be to check for the pitch and temporal proximity of left-hand or right-hand notes, and infer the handed-ness of the misplayed note this way. This would likely fix 99% of the occurrences of these bugs.
- The lessons selection screen
8. (nitpick) When completing a bootcamp exercise and returning to the bootcamp lesson selection screen, the first or second click is swallowed by a page refresh and does nothing (also, the "checkmark" for completion appears only when I click the menu, giving me a weird sensation that I didn't complete the exercise, for a brief moment).
- In the forum
9. (nitpick) When accessing the forum from the app, I am not logged and I do not have a forum account (despite being both those things in the app).
10. (problematic) When trying to create an account from within the playgrounds app, the "I am not a robot" privacy check never completes, making it impossible to create an account. I had to open the forum in Chrome instead.
11. (PRETTY ANNOYING) I was disconnected while typing this entire post, argh! And the contents of this entire post had to be retyped! Nobody warned me this was going to happen! I'd actually have had to retype this post THRICE if I hadn't expected the same thing to occur the second time around!!!
As for other kinds of user feedback...
Great app, guys. I actually felt like I was learning piano, despite having some in-depth self-taught knowledge. I mostly tried Playgrounds to learn to read music properly, and I already feel more confident about that.
I was disappointed about the lack of certain things, though, namely:
- More composer-oriented theory, such as less fundamental chords (diminished, augmented, 9ths, 11ths, 13ths, Neapolitan), modes (!!!) and roman chord notation to think of chord progression at a higher level of abstraction.
- Lack of exercises diversity, with no exercise explicitly training the ear, the theory, or music-reading. While there WERE lessons explicitly for music-reading, they could be learned, and thus had only finite value. If, on the other hand, the exercises had been generated semi-randomly, or better yet, procedurally generated using AI or using flow-theory to adapt the difficulty of the notes based on player performance. Static exercises can be learned, and they end when the user gets 100% - not so much with procedurally generated content.
If the latter seems ambitious, it's mostly because I actually want to design a piano-teaching app myself, using these concepts. In fact, I've got the main problems figured out... One day I'd like to spend the years necessary to make that happen, if nobody does.
General user help and bug reports for Playground Sessions for Windows
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