Author Topic: I made an app to help with JUSTIN training  (Read 16299 times)

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Offline bftanase

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I made an app to help with JUSTIN training
« on: June 23, 2011, 02:48:27 pm »
Hi everyone,

I had some free time on my hands and I made a simple program to help with JUSTIN ear training.

It basically generates quizzes from a pool of chords: it randomly plays a chord and you have to guess which chord was played. Currently only supports Single Sound Recognition "mode".
It is fully customizable, you can add your own chords and create your own exercises. Also keeps track of your progress.

The main features:

-Record or import sound samples for whatever chords you want to train
-Create exercises based on those chords
-Generate random questions from the defined exercises
-Practice your chord recognition by taking quizzes
-Record and display statistics about your progress

I've also setup a _very_ basic site with screenshots, documentation and download area.

http://chords.btanase.ro

You need to have Java version 6.x installed and although it should work on Mac and Linux I've only tested in Windows. Let me know if it works for you.

There might be some bugs lurking around so if you find any, email me and I'll try to sort it out.

If you think it's useful, leave feedback! That'll motivate me to improve it ;)

Oh, I almost forgot. This is totally free... as in free beer :D

Cheers,
Bogdan Tanase

Offline LBro

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Re: I made an app to help with JUSTIN training
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2011, 04:01:53 pm »
Cool,
I will give it a spin when I get home.

Thanks so much!
LB

Offline bftanase

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Re: I made an app to help with JUSTIN training
« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2011, 06:08:42 am »
If you have any questions or suggestions, let me know.

Offline LievenDV

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Re: I made an app to help with JUSTIN training
« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2011, 07:57:18 am »
I installed before (now I remember, becasue it's already set to lefty :) ) ; cool program!
So, without knowign it was already on my disk, I installed in on another location again.
Now it hangs when I try to open the options. The rest seems to work fine.
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Offline LBro

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Re: I made an app to help with JUSTIN training
« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2011, 08:00:09 am »
Hi,
The screen shots look interresting. I started to DL it and got some strange messages that this was not a normail download methode. This is my main music production  system and that made me paranoid so I pulled out. What is up with the DL location and or methode? Can you elaborate more on that?

Also you mention you can add sound sample files for the guitar cords. Does it come with some to get you started? I have samples of everything but guitar cords... Unless it comes with or there are some on the net to add to it I would have to try and make my own. You probably explain this in your docs but I just got back from a trip and was not up to checking that deep into it at this point. More as time permits.

LB

Offline bftanase

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Re: I made an app to help with JUSTIN training
« Reply #5 on: June 28, 2011, 08:09:03 am »
Hmm... don't know about that warning about downloading. The only "unusual" thing about the download process is that it logs the download to a database, so that I know how many downloads I have.

For techies:

it's a php page that first records info about the visitor (download version, time, etc) and then reads the file from the disk and outputs it to the browser. This is though a common practice, don't know why you get this warning...

@LievenDV,

What do you mean it hang when entering "Options" ? I don't remember having a section named "Options". Anyway email or post application.log and sysinfo.log files and I'll take a look at it.

Thanks


Offline bftanase

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Re: I made an app to help with JUSTIN training
« Reply #6 on: June 28, 2011, 08:15:13 am »
About the chord samples:

Included are up to stage 4 from Justin's course. That's were I am atm. Total beginner, I know :)

Unfortunately I don't have any decent recording gear (or any decent guitar... ) otherwise I would have included more samples.

The existing ones are ripped from Justin's exercises, but it's pretty tedious work.

If you think this is useful, you can help by providing high quality samples and I'll include it in the "official" build :)

Offline LBro

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Re: I made an app to help with JUSTIN training
« Reply #7 on: June 28, 2011, 08:26:16 am »
Ah,
Well IE9 is probably freaking out over the data gathering or something. I will give it a shot with my secondary machine.

Ok, so there is some samples to get one started. I might consider making some samples. I have the equipment, but never set out to do such a thing. I would think it could get done on here (via users here) one way or another. There are some good folks on here with both knowledge and resources. I just wonder if there is a hord of samples on the net somewhere? I have never searched for those as I never had a need. Have you tried that?

Thanks again for taking the time to program and posting it here. I imagine if it gains a following you would then make it shareware or somthing and hit the big time...  :)

LB

Offline bftanase

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Re: I made an app to help with JUSTIN training
« Reply #8 on: June 28, 2011, 08:38:52 am »
This a hobby project cause I was getting bored of doing business apps for work, don't intend to commercialize it ;)


Offline LBro

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Re: I made an app to help with JUSTIN training
« Reply #9 on: June 28, 2011, 09:12:37 am »
I can relate, coding for a living can be good for the pocketbook and tough in other ways...

Well let me know on that search for samples. If you can not find any maybe I can help. I was thinking of a way to go about it and think it would be fairly easy to set up. Not sure how many you are talking about.

I will get your app going and have a listen to what you got so far. I remember listening to those in the lesson and it did not seem like there were many. I would guess one would start with acoustic ones for now. Maybe in an update electrics could be included? Then you would have to program in fast sequences of cords to make it more like a song and then it would be known as work and not a hobby. lol

Lots of possibilities.

Offline LBro

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Re: I made an app to help with JUSTIN training
« Reply #10 on: June 28, 2011, 09:31:18 am »
Ok BF,
Ran fine on my other system. Heck you got many of the cords I know. Probably why the songs I make are so limited. I like that you can put your own lesson together. To help you I would have to get a lot better at playing chords than I am now. The good thing is you only need one clean strum of them and no changes. but unless one is really going to get ambitious I wonder how much further you want to go on this app as far as samples go? What were you thinking of for your next set of chords?

LB

Offline bftanase

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Re: I made an app to help with JUSTIN training
« Reply #11 on: June 28, 2011, 09:52:22 am »
Probably covering the chords from the whole beginner's course would be good, didn't think much about it...

You gave me an idea with your previous message. I could create multiple "profiles" for each chord. (ex: Acoustic 1, Acoustic 2, Electric 1, etc... ).

I'm thinking there's a chance you'll actually get used with the way the recording sounds and not the actual chord sound. Basically you learn the specific recording, not the actual chord. Does it make any sense?

For example, during the quiz, when the program has to play the Em chord it will (randomly?) chose one of the defined profiles.

What do you think?

PS: When I started this app I thought each user will record its own samples for whatever he wants to learn. But after I recorded my own and saw how crappy they were (sound quality - electric guitar directly through computer/no amp), I've decided to include some from Justin's lessons.

Offline Loco

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Re: I made an app to help with JUSTIN training
« Reply #12 on: June 28, 2011, 03:56:10 pm »
my suggestions:

1. let user choose how many questions he wants in a particular lesson, e.g. the first lesson with chords A, D, E has only 3 questions and it would be good if i could set it for 20 or so, instead of resetting everytime

2. there should be possibility that particular chord will be played a few times in a row or that it won't be played at all during the session, e.g. now when i heard A, D, i know for sure that the last chord would be E, so it's not very educational and there should be also sessions like D, D, D or E, A, E etc.

3. the play/stop button changes are kind of an indicator how long is the recording which helps with associating the chord not to the sound but to its length unless all the recordings have the same length, so i would put two buttons separately
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Offline LBro

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Re: I made an app to help with JUSTIN training
« Reply #13 on: June 28, 2011, 04:18:36 pm »
I think I got what your thinking about - I might go about it differently. If you want a programing challenge you could add say a few drum (maybe 1 to start with) backing tracks with variable beats per minute (BPM). Then randomly play chords to them. You are getting into an area I am weak on here though as it would have to probably work off the circle of 5ths? Not sure I am saying that right as I would have to check out the circle again. But the idea is the program randomly sets up chord progressions that sound like a song and the user picks the BPM to play them at. This would be the advanced mode for both you to program and them, when the user skill level is close to the point of really transcribing songs. By doing this chord progression advanced method this way you would avoid copy write issues... But this is more kind of like in the future for your program. Like I said you have a great start and foundation to build off of and there are a lot of possible future enhancements you could think about.

Now on the chords, well I am not sure I am up to all those cords. One has to decide on bar (barre) chords or open ones as well. I would start maybe with open chords as they ring out better, that is at least for me at this point as I struggle with some bar chords too. In me you have no expert on guitar and in many ways my skill level probably matches yours. I just goofed around on guitar for a long time for the fun of it and learned some bad habits and had no instructor. That is why I love this site as I do now have one.

Back to the chord progression idea. Think of it as a blind test where no chords are shown. Say you have a drum beat going and the program plays Am, Em, D. All without showing the user the chords until after they choose from a button pallet that has a lot of choices on it. Some are not even in the view the user sees so as to make it harder for them to choose. This would really mimic what would have to be done in a song transcription. I guess what I am saying is that the app is great for us beginners, but by adding some features as I am talking about it becomes possibly an intermediate tool as well. Possibly even a higher level tool. Does any of this make sense?

One could learn a lot just by thinking up ways on the above program enhancement both in fingering the chords and theory wise...  ;)

Some things to think about anyway. By the way I searched for "guitar samples" in google and got a ton of hits, a lot of them free. But my fear there is you would have to extract them from progressions. But again maybe some canned, advance progression in different styles would be a good thing and that is another way to go about programing it. Just a thought there.

I am not a coder but I worked in IT for 20+ years and my brother is the coder in the family. I will turn him onto your little app and maybe he will have some ideas too. That is if you want me to contact him on it?

Take care,
Dave

Offline LBro

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Re: I made an app to help with JUSTIN training
« Reply #14 on: June 28, 2011, 04:24:41 pm »
Well Loco's post is good and short and probably more applicable to where the program is at right now! My ideas are more longer term I think. Just waking up so some ramblings probably did not make sense.

LB

 

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