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At A Glance

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Organizing Your Music

Merging two or more files

With version 5 of forScore and later, you can merge multiple files into a single PDF:

  • Open the score menu and navigate to a view that shows all of the files you’d like to combine
  • Tap the edit button in the upper right corner of the menu
  • Tap to select the files you would like to combine in order from first to last
  • Tap the Merge button that appears when multiple PDFs are selected
  • The app will then prompt you to name the merged file and ask if you’d like to retain the source PDFs, then begin the merge operation

Please note: Merging files is limited to the processing and memory limits of your device, so this process may crash the app if the files being merged are too large for the device to handle. Merging only retains the metadata of the first file selected, and any metadata in the subsequent files will be omitted/deleted.

Lastly, if you need to change the location of one of the PDFs (e.g. place a missing page in the middle of an existing score), you can then use the Rearrange tool to edit the page order.

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Managing a score’s setlist and library membership

The “setlists” tab in the metadata panel lets you quickly manage which setlists the current score is a part of. Tap a setlist to add the current score to it (a blue checkbox will appear) and tap it again to remove it. If you have multiple libraries set up, a similar “libraries” panel lets you manage library membership in the same manner.

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Understanding the setlist menu

Unlike the score menu, which automatically generates and sorts its contents, the setlist menu is completely manual. Create a setlist by tapping the + button and supplying a title, and rename or move it up or down at any time by tapping the “edit” button. Tap on any setlist to view or edit its contents.

The main list of setlists and the contents of each individual setlist can be sorted manually, alphabetically, or by least-recently played (fresh). In addition, individual setlists can be sorted randomly and shuffled at any time: drag the list downward until you see the refresh control, then let go to re-shuffle the queue.

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Using Console to access your library from your computer

Console is an app-hosted web interface that allows you to access your forScore library from the web browser on your computer, making it easy to edit metadata and organize your library from the comfort of your desk and a keyboard. This feature is available in the Tools menu in forScore, and tapping on it provides instructions for authorizing and accessing it through your web browser. Here are some additional tips:

  • If you have a dual-band router, make sure both devices are on the same band/frequency
  • Keep the Console screen open on your iOS device for the duration of your web access
  • Make sure you’re using the latest version of your browser (Safari, Chrome, Firefox, Opera, and Internet Explorer are supported)

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Fetching PDF metadata

PDF files sometimes contain their own information for title, author, subject, and keywords, which can be used by forScore as values for title, composer, genre, and tags respectively. If you’ve already imported a PDF file that might contain metadata, tap “Fetch…” above the keyboard while editing any field to see if any of this information exists and then decide if you’d like to use it or not. To automatically check for and use this information when a new file is added to your library, enable the “automatic fetching for new files” option in forScore’s settings panel.

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Understanding alphabetical sorting

Alphabetical sorting in most of forScore’s menus works by skipping leading articles such as “a”, “an”, and “the”, much like a library catalog or book index. If you prefer, you can disable the “Smart sorting” option in the app’s settings panel to list the titles purely by first letter.

When viewing the list of composers, forScore also alphabetizes by last name (or the last word of a name). If you prefer to sort using the first name of each composer value, open the app’s settings panel and enable “sort composers by first name.”

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Deleting or replacing metadata

When you’re working with metadata, a box to the left of each field helps you understand and control what will happen to any existing information once you’re done editing. If it’s unchecked or empty, no changes will be made to your file for that specific type of metadata. If it’s checked, the file’s existing metadata will be replaced with whatever you’ve entered in. The best choice is selected for you automatically as you work with these fields, but you can tap the box at any time to change it. For instance, if you want to clear out any existing values for a field, delete the text and then tap the box on the left so it shows a check mark. This replaces the value that was there previously with the one you’ve entered in: nothing.

If you’re batch editing, the Composers, Genres, and Tags fields will toggle between the same “checked” state—meaning that existing values will be replaced with whatever you’ve typed in—and an “append” state (a plus symbol). In this case, the + indicates that the values you’ve entered in will be added to the selected files, and that all existing values will be preserved.

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Editing information with the metadata panel

In the score, bookmark, and setlist menus, tap the blue arrow button off to the right-hand side of any score or certain bookmarks to open the metadata panel where you can view and edit forScore’s information about that item. From the main screen, you can also tap the title in the menu bar for quick access to the current score or bookmark’s information.

Title

A score’s title is, by default, its filename minus the “.pdf” extension. If you change the title, forScore updates the filename to match as closely as possible (it adds a number if needed to ensure that the filename is unique).

Multiple Values

Items may have one or more composers, genres, tags, or labels. To use multiple values, separate them using commas within each text field. For instance, “tag 1, tag 2” is automatically separated and creates two entries (“tag 1” and “tag 2”) in the Tags list.

Other Metadata

Other values include rating and difficulty (which can be set by tapping or sliding your finger across their star or dot symbols), time, and key. In the Layout tab in the lower section of the metadata panel, you can also specify a page offset to account for a preface or title page.

Bookmarks

Bookmarks can be created by supplying a title, start page number, and an optional end page number. If no end page number is provided, the bookmark lets you quickly access that page but offers no additional abilities and does not maintain its own metadata values. If you do provide an end page, forScore creates a reference to that range of pages and treats them like any other score in your library: you can add metadata to them, add them to setlists, and more. (The rest of this section pertains to this second type of bookmark.)

There are a few differences between working with metadata for scores and bookmarks. Unlike with scores, a bookmark’s title has no relation to its PDF filename. Bookmark titles must be unique within their parent score, otherwise you can use any value you like. Page offsets are available for scores only, since the number of leading pages isn’t something that’s specific to a particular bookmark.

Batch editing

When you access the metadata panel from one of forScore’s menus, you’ll see a + button in the top right-hand corner that lets you select additional files and edit some of their values all at once. Batch editing is not available when you tap the title display to access the current item’s metadata.

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Organization Basics

The score menu organizes your files by Composers, Genres, Tags, and Labels. These lists are generated dynamically, so they’ll only show values currently being used by one or more items in your library. (Learn more about changing an item’s properties using the Metadata panel.)

Tap any of these entries and you’ll see a new list containing all of the scores that pertain to that category. A single score may be visible in several different lists, so long as it matches the corresponding category or setlist. (For example, a score with “Johann Sebastian Bach” as its composer and “Romantic” as its genre will be listed under both of these categories.) Most submenus can be sorted by date added, rating, difficulty, key, time, or alphabetically.

Note: By default, forScore sorts Composers alphabetically by last name and sorts scores by omitting common words like “the,” “a,” and “and.” You can change both of these behaviors in the app’s settings panel to better suit your needs.

The setlist menu lets you create lists and group things manually so you can play through them in any order you need. Setlists even allow you to place the same item in a list more than once. Learn more about setlists here.

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Using Indexes to create bookmarks

When you’re using one long PDF file with multiple pieces within it, bookmarks are an essential part of ensuring that forScore can be at its best, giving you all of the great features you’d get with individual PDF files for each score.

Since adding bookmarks can be a daunting and time-consuming task, use the Indexes feature to create bookmarks from a comma-separated value (CSV) file. To begin, import a CSV file by downloading it through the Services panel, copying it to forScore from another app (or using Drag and Drop), or by adding it to your forScore library from a computer using iTunes’ File Sharing panel.

While viewing your score, open the Bookmarks menu and tap “Indexes” in the top left-hand corner and choose your CSV file. Values found in each column are listed in the “values” section—tap any of them to assign their information to specific types of forScore metadata, then browse through each record to make sure things look right. Set a page offset value, if necessary, and check the thumbnail preview to make sure each bookmark lines up correctly. Skip any header or footer rows as needed, then tap “save” when you’re ready.

If you have multiple CSV files that are structured similarly, you can save and reuse your current value mapping by selecting “default to these settings.”

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