Software recognition, by eye

Recommendations concerning notation and publishing software in a non-partisan environment.
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OCTO
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Software recognition, by eye

Post by OCTO » 28 Feb 2016, 05:50

I assume that many of you have developed tools for recognition of software which is used for a particular score in question.

Here are mine tools, and here we don't count on engraving faults that could reveal it, and also not counting fonts (it is easies way). I work mostly in Finale so I can judge quicker and unequal.
FINALE:
- slur shapes (and default tip thickness as "0")
- accidental position (often to wide)
- ties (differs from slurs)
- stem lengths and beam angles (to long)
- hairpins (different tip between short and long hairpins)

SIBELIUS
- slur shape (ending points)
- spacing (somehow different)
- beams (thickness and position)

SCORE
- slurs and ties (flat ability, middle part flat)
- density and spacing (often very well done)
- beams (somehow more bold)
- reduced score/stave (very well legible)

LilyPond
- beams angles and stem lengths
- slurs (round tips, shape)
- text settings (latex?)
- overall outlook (latex?)
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John Ruggero
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Re: Software recognition, by eye

Post by John Ruggero » 29 Feb 2016, 17:09

I never noticed that about the Finale hairpins, OCTO. Now I'l never see anything else when I insert one!

Being no expert, I recognize LilyPond but the ugly default clef, Sibelius by the too thick default slurs and overall look, and Finale by the ugly Maestro treble clef and accent marks, the absurd default first and second endings, the missing centered multi-measure rests for multiple staffed instruments, the overly bowed default slurs etc. SCORE is not in my vocabulary yet.
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MJCube
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Re: Software recognition, by eye

Post by MJCube » 01 Mar 2016, 17:12

I have found SCORE output often pleases my eye before I look closely enough to identify it. This is probably because (a) the default glyph designs are reasonably good, and (b) the software requires so much effort that only those who really know what they’re doing bother with it any more. So the results I see usually have good spacing and layout. Not that I can’t find things to improve about it, but it certainly beats Finale and Sibelius defaults for appearance every time.

Sibelius’s defaults make it rather easy for a novice to produce output that is readable if not always beautiful. Finale lies somewhere between the two; it is easy for the inexperienced to produce ugly or unreadable or nonsensical copy with Finale. I don’t know how easy or hard it is to mess things up in LilyPond.

But I’m getting off topic! You asked about earmarks, besides font characters, which is a very detailed inquiry! Brackets and braces have distinctive shapes; maybe that’s still too obvious. There are the typical layout problems that thoughtful engravers always fix:
• If the last system is stretched way out, it’s probably Finale (or if the last 2 systems, Sibelius)
• Large white gap in mid-page in Sibelius due to default vertical justification of not enough material
• Horizontal spacing with lyrics uneven to the point of rhythmically confusing: typically worst in Finale
• Collision avoidance in LilyPond appears to be more work than in Finale and Sibelius
• Conversely, wildly misshaped slurs happen more easily in Finale

Generally I find:
• If staff lines are too thin, or leger lines too short, it’s usually Finale
• If barlines are too heavy it’s probably LilyPond
• Melismatic lyric syllable centered on the first note rather than left-aligned: more often Finale than others
• Tempo marks with numerals improperly in the music text font is a sign of Finale
• Rehearsal letters enclosed in a shape other than rectangle or circle: Finale
• Text on a small staff, scaled to the staff size when it shouldn’t be (e.g. tempo) is often a sign of a Sibelius user not knowing about the absolute size feature

I think I could spend all week looking for these things, and I’d better stop for now.

cGilmore
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Re: Software recognition, by eye

Post by cGilmore » 02 Mar 2016, 07:44

I find myself nodding along to what everyone has mentioned so far; smiling with a few of them.

For me, the font is too much of a dead giveaway not to influence everything else I see from there. I don't know that I've seen a score in Opus but that was done in Finale.

Not to veer the topic too far away, but does anyone have friends who find this ability to tell the software used to notate music as some kind of dark art? ;)

BACK to the topic, sort of.

What about Notaset/transfers? I don't know if I've ever seen a score that used this. I would assume so but may have falsely attributed the variations I saw to engraving.
Enthusiastic engraving hobbiest

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tisimst
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Re: Software recognition, by eye

Post by tisimst » 02 Mar 2016, 08:10

cGilmore wrote:For me, the font is too much of a dead giveaway not to influence everything else I see from there. I don't know that I've seen a score in Opus but that was done in Finale.
Although it is possible to use Opus in Finale, I suspect you meant "done in Sibelius". Or did you mean "score in Maestro"?
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cGilmore
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Re: Software recognition, by eye

Post by cGilmore » 03 Mar 2016, 03:02

@tisimst

"…a score using the Opus font but made with Finale," is how I should've said it, as in, seeing a score that implements the Finale rules but is using the font from Sibelius. I was trying to explain that seeing a particular font immediately puts my brain into a mode of expecting to see everything else I would normally associate with the software that uses that font. I was just wondering if I saw a score that swapped fonts (Maestro to Sibelius or Opus to Finale), if I would see everything unbiased and still be able to tell as easily.*

That said, I use to mix Vienna, Engraver, and Maestro (maybe?**) when using Finale—along with a number of other tweaks—and it still felt Finale-ish to me.
___________________
*But this also assumes the engraver made other adjustments, such as slur tips, and other lines, which are dead giveaways to me. If they didn't make these changes, then switching fonts wouldn't matter.
** I can't remember if I used Maestro for time-signatures or not. Perhaps not?
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MJCube
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Re: Software recognition, by eye

Post by MJCube » 03 Mar 2016, 04:34

Just today I was looking at a score that came from Finale into Sibelius via MusicXML, and brought with it the Maestro font. The font is obviously Finale, but the bracket can only be Sibelius. On closer inspection, the slurs and note spacing are clearly Sibelius (with my custom tweaks).

Oderfla
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Re: Software recognition, by eye

Post by Oderfla » 10 Aug 2016, 08:42

These kinds of issues sometimes are conviernten in byzantine discussions. Any decent program, well adjusted in their editing parameters, you can make a very beautiful scores. I use a program of less than $ 100 and allows me to do everything (even more fexible) everything to do with Sibelius or Finale. Sometimes it's not the tool, it is the skill and taste of who uses it. I am a supporter of the program that lets you customize everything about editing and appearance of the score. It is already known that in a matter of taste there is nothing written. The important thing is that the tool is almost like a paper and pencil.

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T Earl
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Re: Software recognition, by eye

Post by T Earl » 13 Nov 2016, 10:38

Hey folks,

This is my first post on the forum, so hey! I wonder if you guys could help?

I didn't want to start a new thread so I thought this one was best suited to my question... Can any of you identify the program used to engrave this score. I've attached a small sample of the score which includes the clef. I just can't make out what software was used for it. Apologies for the big watermark across the score, I do own the score but thought a PDF would be a better way to show you guys!

The publisher is Schott, so that may give it away, I don't know?

Cheers guys!
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OCTO
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Re: Software recognition, by eye

Post by OCTO » 13 Nov 2016, 12:36

From a PDF I could estimate better, the picture is hard to zoom at the high level. I guess it is Finale (of course, customized).
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