feature of the week

Music: System Library

| feature of the week

Sometimes it helps to be able to play music while using forScore, and not just have music playing, but also to be able to make it easier to control playback and get the right song ready at the right time. Whether you need some accompaniment while you practice, a backing track on stage, or just need to hear something to help you learn it, audio tracks are the answer.

With forScore, you can do all of these things: associate each score or bookmark in your library with one or more audio tracks so you don’t have to find them every time, and control playback, loop a specific section, change the speed and pitch of the track, and even record yourself and play it back later—all without leaving the app. There’s a lot you can do, so over the next few weeks we’ll be taking a look at different parts of forScore’s media system, starting with the different sources of music you can access.

The first and most common source of music is the iPad’s shared system library, or the Music library (with a capital “M” because it’s the same library you access through the Music app). When you sync music to your iPad through iTunes, or buy a track through the iTunes store on your device, this is where those tracks end up. Developers like us can request read-only access to this information in order to provide additional features. In the lower section of the metadata panel, select the “audio” tab and press the circled note icon (it looks like the iTunes icon). Browse by artist, album, genre, composer, playlist, or view all songs. When you find the track you’d like to use, just tap it. Keep browsing to add other tracks, then tap “Done” to close the media picker.

Once you’ve done that, you’ll see the media box along the bottom of the screen—it appears and disappears along with the navigation bar when you tap the center of the screen. Press play to start your song, drag the seek bar back and forth to go to a specific point in the song, and use the pause and back buttons as needed to control playback. If you have more than one track set up, swipe left or right over the album artwork to change the current song.

Those are the basics, but we’ll be back next week and beyond with much more!