Dorico development issue

Recommendations concerning notation and publishing software in a non-partisan environment.
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Fred G. Unn
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by Fred G. Unn »

MichelRE wrote: 05 Sep 2023, 20:05 it's important that you POST on the Dorico forum, very detailed (if possible with examples and images) descriptions of these requests.
I kinda have. I mean, for one post 14 months ago I listed 20 requests with what I thought were very detailed descriptions, and almost the entire list pretty much still stands as requests. #10 made it into Dorico 5 so that can be crossed off. #12 did for roots but not suffixes, and shortly after I made that list I figured out how to hack that myself for roots and suffixes with a doricolib file anyway, so I don't even use that D5 setting. (On the chord symbol side of things, I also have doricolib files for the missing chord symbol slash font settings, full modal names, missing 6/9 settings, etc. I've just given up on further chord symbol requests, and try to find ways to hack them in myself.) #16 sorta came in 4.2 or 4.3 after I wrote that list. You can edit your Preferences file to set the default mixer level to be 0, but that's oddly not actually a valid entry so it will be slightly changed whenever you hit Apply in the Preferences window.

I get it. The dev team is shorthanded, plus they have their own vision of where they are taking development. There's no point in implementing a specific request now if an entire feature is scheduled to be overhauled in the future, and obviously as users we aren't privy to that roadmap. I'm sure Daniel is glad to not hear me griping about chord symbol issues anymore LOL, but I've certainly written lots of issues up at length in the past. I could change that thread title to be Dorico 6 wishlist, modify those few things mentioned above, and just repost it, but that seems pointless.

I currently really wish they would get over their insistence that we don't need to be able to hide cautionary key sigs though. It's a new semester so I'm revising a lot of my old handouts, or creating new ones, and some of them use 50 or more hidden Codas just to hide cautionary key sigs, ugh! (The "official" Dorico way of using 50 Flows for this is much slower and not any better.)
benwiggy
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by benwiggy »

Fred G. Unn wrote: 06 Sep 2023, 04:28one post 14 months ago I listed 20 requests with what I thought were very detailed descriptions, and almost the entire list pretty much still stands as requests. #10 made it into Dorico 5 so that can be crossed off. #12 did for roots but not suffixes...

I get it. The dev team is shorthanded, plus they have their own vision of where they are taking development.
Given the number of feature requests going up every day, they could have 500 developers and still be short-handed! You've done well to get something that you requested implemented.

I have my own wishlist of about 25 items: most of them just global or quicker ways of doing things that can already be done manually, like an option for fermatas to outside the staves (e.g. under the bass) on keyboard parts; some of them things that can't be done currently without a lot of fiddling, or at all, like Figured bass on the right-hand staff.

I usually get to cross off at least one with each new release.
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Fred G. Unn
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Location: NYCish

Re: Dorico development issue

Post by Fred G. Unn »

benwiggy wrote: 06 Sep 2023, 09:40 Given the number of feature requests going up every day, they could have 500 developers and still be short-handed! You've done well to get something that you requested implemented.
Haha, probably true! I think with Dorico 4 it reached a maturity level as a program where it can handle 99% percent of what I'd like it to do. There aren't the showstopper issues anymore like back in D2.3 when I first switched. (Erroneously displaying Cmaj7 chords as C7 was a fun one.) Most of my own personal requests are really more like "quality of life" requests, but there are still workarounds for most everything. A big omission notationally is lack of support for cutaway scores and some other "modern" techniques, but I've personally only been asked to do those just a handful of times before. For those that work in that space, certainly it's important.

I'd personally be very happy to see D6 focus on notational loose ends, but obviously those aren't very marketable, so I'm sure they have some "big" marketable feature planned. The big D5 feature of stage/space templates was honestly pretty pointless for me personally, as I already used MIR, which is designed and implemented much better. (Plenty of other users were already using Altiverb or another space convolution reverb as well.) Obviously Steinberg does market research, but it would be interesting to know what the biggest requests are by publishers outside of the Gould comfort zone. Lack of alternate chord symbols is probably a dealbreaker for a publisher like Shur, lack of control over instrument changes probably a dealbreaker for Emily Grishman and the musical theater scene, lack of cutaway scores for some contemporary publishers, etc. I'm curious to see what direction they take it, but would love to see D6 focus on more notation features rather than playback.
NeeraWM
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by NeeraWM »

Fred G. Unn wrote: 06 Sep 2023, 13:58 I'm curious to see what direction they take it, but would love to see D6 focus on more notation features rather than playback.
Yeah, me too!
To be sure I understand: is the doricolib something like Sibelius House Style, that you drop into Library Manager and import what you need?
Or how do you create/apply them?
benwiggy
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by benwiggy »

NeeraWM wrote: 06 Sep 2023, 16:04 To be sure I understand: is the doricolib something like Sibelius House Style, that you drop into Library Manager and import what you need?
Dorico uses XML under the hood to describe and store most of its data: this includes Expression maps, Engraving Options etc; but also notation objects like clefs, instruments, notes, tonalities and key signatures, playing techniques, etc, etc.

A .doricolib file is just a bit of XML that contains some or all of that.
Fred G. Unn wrote: 06 Sep 2023, 13:58 I'm curious to see what direction they take it, but would love to see D6 focus on more notation features rather than playback.
Daniel has been very candid and detailed in his explanation of the development: they can't afford to ignore any segment of the notation market. A lot of people are interested in producing good audio mockups directly from notes, rather than using a DAW; and while Dorico has created some 'serious' playback features, they haven't done so exclusively. There are loads of engraving improvements across version 4 and 5.

The trouble with engraving is that whatever you do, someone wants it done differently. There will always be more options to accommodate. That's where Finale's "you can do anything" approach is strong. Because it's less strict about knowing what things are, and what their behaviours should be, you can accommodate anything.

Dorico is becoming more flexible, as it develops: with properties, Engrave mode editing, and with the Editors of Music Symbols, Noteheads and others. Sure, you can't do cutaway scores and modern graphical stuff with aleatoric sections: but it'll come. I dare say by the time Dorico is 10, it will be much more comprehensive in its capabilities, with limitations and roadblocks only in very niche edge-cases.

I was writing letters to MakeMusic CEOs complaining about the lack of development back in 2010. Should I see any slow-down in Dorico's pace or vision, I'm sure you'll hear about it from me; until then, I don't think there's any cause for worry about things not being included.
Last edited by benwiggy on 06 Sep 2023, 17:07, edited 1 time in total.
NeeraWM
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by NeeraWM »

benwiggy wrote: 06 Sep 2023, 16:48 Dorico uses XML under the hood to describe and store most of its data: this includes Expression maps, Engraving Options etc; but also notation objects like clefs, instruments, notes, tonalities and key signatures, playing techniques, etc, etc.

A .doricolib file is just a bit of XML that contains some or all of that.
Is it then something you create as a user from a text editor capable of XML saving/reading or can you create it from within Dorico?
I believe that is not documented, right?
When editing the few scripts I have created I wondered if there were a list of commands the users could browse through to create scripts directly.
benwiggy
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by benwiggy »

NeeraWM wrote: 06 Sep 2023, 17:05
Is it then something you create as a user from a text editor capable of XML saving/reading or can you create it from within Dorico?
I believe that is not documented, right?
When editing the few scripts I have created I wondered if there were a list of commands the users could browse through to create scripts directly.
If you do Export Library from the Library menu; or if you export an expression Map, you'll get a .doricolib file. A Playback Template has a different file extension, but is essentially the same format, I think. The userdefaults.xml file is also the same format.

Script commands are a different thing. You're best off just recording things and seeing what gets logged.
NeeraWM
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by NeeraWM »

Thanks ☺️!
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Fred G. Unn
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by Fred G. Unn »

NeeraWM wrote: 06 Sep 2023, 16:04 To be sure I understand: is the doricolib something like Sibelius House Style, that you drop into Library Manager and import what you need?
Or how do you create/apply them?
If you look in the folder where Dorico is installed, most of the xml data files there can be modified with a doricolib file placed in the user DefaultLibraryAdditions folder. Obviously as they are unsupported, there's no guarantee they will continue to work with future updates, but as they override various settings, you aren't actually physically modifying any of the factory files.

For example, Dorico's InstrumentScoreOrders.xml file currently places Clarinets in alphabetical order, rather than size, in the score so Clarinet in A appears above Clarinet in Bb. You can manually move it of course, but I have a doricolib file that fixes that automatically. I also created one for a Jazz score order, with Trumpets above French Horns, and various instruments like Rhodes, Wurli, B3, percussion etc. all positioned the way I'd like them. I used to have hundreds of chord symbol overrides in my basic default file, until I realized I could fix all the poor accidental positioning with a simple doricolib hack that redefines the Y axis placement of those glyphs. That's the fix that really got me involved with doricolib stuff as I realized I had wasted hours and hours (days?) with chord symbol editing that could have easily been done with a doricolib file. (Plus manually edited chord symbols can't be used with parentheses either.)

Some other personal uses: With a doricolib file, I have all my Page Templates, including all my V.S. and Tacet templates, ready to go in any New file so I don't need to import them. I've added a bunch of different default tempo indications, which is very useful for tempos or grooves where I always have to look up the diacritical marks like Bembé, Afoxê, Baião, etc. I have quite a few additional page sizes, including iPad sizes, all set up and ready to go too, so I don't have to enter custom sizes. I also use them for some additional clef definitions and other things along these lines. They can be quite useful for those willing to dive in and investigate them!
NeeraWM
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by NeeraWM »

I'm not sure whether I should be happy or terrified that you explained me this!
The urge to go there and mess things up will be hard to resist!
Fred G. Unn wrote: 06 Sep 2023, 17:25 Some other personal uses: With a doricolib file, I have all my Page Templates, including all my V.S. and Tacet templates, ready to go in any New file so I don't need to import them. [...] I have quite a few additional page sizes, including iPad sizes, all set up and ready to go too, so I don't have to enter custom sizes. I also use them for some additional clef definitions and other things along these lines. They can be quite useful for those willing to dive in and investigate them!
This... I need to learn how to do this.
Importing Page Templates is seldom working well in Dorico, and it is messing up with Sets (Defaults and not)...
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