I am so desapointed

I’d like to think the tone of your “suggestions” would be more considerate of the development team that not only spend their days working on the software but then spend additional time monitoring these forums to help users solve problems. Surely they deserve a considerate response here to their efforts.

Derek, I’m sorry if the tone of my suggestions comes across badly. They’re not really suggestions as they’re all things that have been discussed and I’ve heard the reasons for or answers to. They’re also not a list of things I hate or want to change - just a list of things that I think are not intuitive, as asked. I also have a long list of ways in which Dorico is better/faster/more flexible than I’ve ever hoped for.

I was responding to this:

“John at Steinberg wrote:
Can you give me any more details on what you feel is not intuitive / odd? I’m interested to know.”

And in the context of my original comment:
“BUT… it is extremely powerful and (once you get it) extremely quick. Stick with it!”

I’ve said here many times that in six months time I fully expect to never use another scoring program again. Dorico is beyond great in so many ways. The development team is fantastically helpful. Daniel in particular has patiently explained to me the reasoning behind many things and the help here is superb.

Genuinely sorry if my post came across as a rant. It wasn’t in any way, but I’m happy to delete it if people think it looks that way.

There is no reason you should delete your post, but expressing your points as rhetorical questions sounds disrespectful. I know the Dorico team want users to point out ways to improve the software, but doing so graciously is sure to encourage them to respond more readily than a tone that seems to say “why didn’t you think of this already?” That’s my point.

I suspect the Dorico team are slightly more robust. There was no disrespect and I have plenty of grace towards the team, as I explained. Again, I’m not making suggestions nor suggesting improvements. Daniel has explained the thinking behind these things. Rhetorical questions were an efficient way to structure a list in answer to a question.
I’m already pretty passionate about Dorico and I can see that it will eventually save me a ton of time. I wouldn’t consider changing decades of workflow otherwise.

Don’t worry, after so many years of working on software like this and of interacting with thousands of customers, we have reasonably thick skins (at least I do, much more so these days now that I’m older and hopefully a little wiser). In another thread on this forum Len makes the point that no sophisticated software is or can be intuitive, a point with which I fully agree, though I do not say that as a kind of get-out clause: I don’t think that just because sophisticated software cannot truly be intuitive, it should be difficult to learn or awkward to use. We have put a lot of time and thought into the way your interaction with Dorico should work (that may be the largest understatement I will make today), but it’s of course fair to say that what we have implemented to date is not a complete realisation of everything we have thought of and want to do, and nor that we are completely rigid in our thinking.

My goal, above all, is to make the program logical and consistent, where possible, as I feel this is something that is actually achievable, whereas making it “intuitive” for anybody other than myself is, unfortunately, not.

I would like first to thanks MarcLarcher and T earl who have kindly proposed to help me. I sincerely appreciate. I understood that you are big fans of Dorico. T earl be sure that I have given a second chance to Dorico but infortunately I think it will need a third one or a fouth one or maybe more.

I would like also to thanks steveparker that put in this thread piece of the users guide. I also appreciate the effort done for helping me. Again, steve what you sent me is not a user’s guide, it is just a list of shortcuts. You are not faulty, Steinberg is.

Now I would like to answer to Bob Tuley:

Dorico works using the content of the music, not its appearance in the score

This is the internal cooking of the developpers. I dont care about how they organized internally the software. I just want to be able to express my music according to a syntax universally known by all musicians, not according the way the developpers organized themself.

Again from Bob:

In Dorico, “rests” don’t actually exist. They are just "gaps between notes

I think this is a mistake. As musician, rests have the same importance as notes and should be considered at the same level. A rest written by Mozart is part of his music. Again, if you get into this game, you implicitly stick to the developer design and you do not speak music. You stick to the conceptual scheme of Dorico designers, not to the standard one of musicians.

Answer to cor anglais 16:

Why in the world would you try to click every single note onto the staff??! Yes, that’s the way pencil and paper work but computers aren’t pencil and paper. That’s like trying to engrave a piece of music into an old-fashioned copper plate using pencil and erasers and not scalpels and stamps and expecting it to work. If you want the tool to work properly, you must use the tool the way the tool was intended to be used.

I deeply desagree about what you say. It is not to the user to adapt to the software. It should be the opposite. The software is just a tool and it has to be transparent as possible. It must be at the service of the user, not the opposite. Now concerning the pencil and the eraser, what we can see is that this is the direction of history. Computers are now graphic tablets and they are delivered with stylus. Does this not look like a sheet of paper and a pencil?

Now, I will answer to John at Steinberg:

Can you give me any more details on what you feel is not intuitive / odd? I’m interested to know.

The first proof of unintuitiveness is that you need to explain how things works. If in this thread you need to explain to NicholasG he is doing something wrongly is just because the something was not intuitive. NicholasG is just like me, he tries to imagine how to write music with this new tool. Normally using an editor is not rocket science, it is within the reach of a majority of people.

What I find counter-intuitive : first inputing elements with the keyboard and to force me to be in this mode. Please look at what is provided by Finale or Sibelius: 3 to 5 different input modes (keyboard, express keyboard, mouse, midi keyboard, stylus). Never they told me that there is an input mode that are better than another. They understood that people are different and everybody acts according to its background. For sure the keyboard input mode you invented is very efficient, but I dont care. I am not making a race. Sorry I use my computer in an uniform way with all softwares I use. I want to be able to do everything you do with your keyboard with my mouse, with menu and contectual menus. I have the feeling we have the same discussion that developpers have when someone argue in favor of vi or emacs versus graphical IDE.

The concept of insert mode versus overwrite mode is now counter-intuitive. This was an old debate in the years begining of 90s with text editors. Today this concept becomes fully transparent for the user. Today, whos care about the mode of its text editor. Nobody. Just click where you want to insert and type your text, so simple as that.

The concept of grid is counter-intuitive. I understand why you need it, especially when you use only keyboard. With a mouse the grid is paintful. It change what you have entered because you dont click at the right position on the grid. No. I want simple things. I click somewhere to insert a note, the software must just append my new elements to what exist. In powerpoint, if you want to draw a square, you have the possibility to snap it to the grid, but you have also the possibility to say No grid.

Not being able to use all the facilities provided by windows is counter-intuitive. You perfectly understood that because you have implemented cut and paste with Ctrl-C and ctrl-V. Why this is not true with ctrl-X or del key. Why when you have selected elements in your music and you type del you dont erase also empty bars. When you are in your text editor the del key remove everything that are selected. It does not replace it with spaces!

Can you explain why the selection in edit tab have not the same behavior in the engraving tab. In edit tab it is fully compliant with windows (click to select, ctrl click to perform multiple selection, shift click to extend the selection). Please dont tell me that is because there are things you are allowed to do in the edit tab and not in the engraving tab because when you make a selection in the edit tab and then you move to the engraving tab the selection stay valid and you can work on the selected elements.

A last point, In engraving tab, when I change the staff spacing, why the next staves dont follow ? Why when I squeeze staves in one page in order to make room at the bottom of the page the staves of the next page are not automatically moved in the empty space of the page ?

Much admiration for what you’ve achieved! Comprehensive and logical are way better than intuitive.

I’ll answer this personally, as I’m not a Dorico developer so I don’t necessarily know all the details or processes they went through.

Given that all humans are different, I think some things will always need at least some explanation, no matter how intuitive something is, especially given the current set of tools (mouse/keyboard/tablet/pen).

You can enter notes using a keyboard, mouse or even a tablet, but as I said before, if using a mouse you will probably want to enter some blank bars to start working with first. Sibelius was also designed to be quickest using a keyboard, and is often the most accurate way of entering pitch.
In Dorico I suggest you start a piece by entering a meter, and then create ‘x’ number of bars so that you have somewhere to click in notes with your mouse.

If you were using a mouse or tablet to enter notes I’m not sure how you’d ever get them in the right place without some sort of reference / grid. It’s not the same as photoshop or powerpoint where your item can go anywhere as that it just a picture - in music I feel that it needs to relate to the other items - or how would you get the 16th note entered at the end of the bar?

When deleting music using a pencil and manuscript paper you don’t want the staff lines / bars to also be deleted, so in most cases I don’t think you’d want that to happen when you select something and press ‘delete’ in music software either.

If you don’t need Insert mode because you are using a mouse for input, don’t use it. I wonder how MS Word will do that mode in the future when we are all writing with a pencil on a tablet, although to be honest, I’m much quicker, more accurate and neater when using a keyboard and typing.

I believe there are some selection differences in Write and Engrave mode that made be able to be made more similar in the future as you can currently select items in one mode that you couldn’t normally select in the other mode.

When you change the staff spacing, there is an option to move all the staves on the page, but it doesn’t upset the spacing on other pages like Sibelius, it is more like Finale in this respect. You can set up one page and then copy that layout / spacing to other pages though if you wish. There are also ‘make into system / frame’ options if you want to push / pull music on to different systems / pages.

Caveat: I normally NEVER use the mouse for note input. Never have on Sibelius. Never do on Dorico. And I happen to be a huge fan of Dorico’s way of doing things.

BUT: Coming from no experience with mouse note input, and having not read any manual about Dorico’s mouse input logic, I can actually see pascalPPPPs point, at least about the caret/grid thing. Now maybe that’s just because I overlook something, but the mouse pointer in mouse note input snaps to the rhythmic value of the grid- and that possibly causes trouble: For example: Your grid is set to quarter notes. When what you input now is a dotted quarter note, and then the next one- you have no obvious way of inputting dotted quarter notes directly following one another, you’ll either input the next “on the dot” - if you’re not in insert mode this means you actually shorten the first dotted quarter, and it’ll happen again one the next one, if you’re inserting you’re splitting the dotted quarter up in quarter note, you inputted note, and then the eight note from the original dotted value. Or, you’ll input the next dotted quarter after an eighth note rest (because the next grid value is there).

Now, I’ll have to say that is weird.

I’d like to add that I do not really need advice as to how to do this the right way, since I never use the mouse. But PascalPPPP does, and I guess he’d be glad for somebody “in the know” to help here.

I don’t really know what to suggest to you, pascalPPPP, since I have never looked for any info on this issue. But I feel that we have to be a li’l better than just saying “Why on earth would you want to use a mouse for note input?”- So if anyone has anything useful to say on this matter, that’ll be the chance. Would it help if, provided you’re in mouse input mode, the cart grid value adjusts to the value you’re inputting (inputting eighth note, grid is on eighth note, switching to dotted quarter input, the grid does the same)? Or would it be better to not snap to the grid?

You can adjust the grid to be more useful for the music you are inputting e.g. 16ths.
You do this from the bottom left corner of Dorico where you can see a note value. Click on it with the mouse or use shortcut Alt + [ or ] (square brackets).

I know about the possibility of manually changing the grid value. I have had to set my shortcut for the grid value to something different, since the square brackets are on a danish mac keyboard only to be found with alt-bracket, and that didn’t trigger the shortcut. I think that might be true for french keyboards as well.

Dear DonMusic
In a french keyboard, the shortcut to change the grid is alt-shift-) to widen the grid and alt-shift-hyphen to make it shorter.

This is just like apple introducing final cut pro X. Everybody that did not get the “new way”, was very badly loudly about it.
But us who new what this really was, had a nice start on the program.

Dorico looks like the same to me. And this is the price you have to pay when changing the way the art has been crafted for a long time.

About the notes/rests. I fully understand the old way, both a equal. But I just love the new way. Notes are inputted and rests are generated by whats not been inputted. Again, compared to FCPX with the magnetic timeline.
I just love the fact that I don’t have to input the rests, they are generated. I just love it.

looking forward to more dorico-time.

Hi Pascal:

Without going into details, I’d just take a deep breath and take another look at Dorico tomorrow, and then the day after that, etc. For some people the program is intuitive and easy to learn; for others, myself included, it takes a bit more time (take a look at the Goldberg Variation thread and see me fumble, and I’ve had the program for several weeks now). Yes, there are a few bugs but those will be fixed … and now there is a user manual, and new tutorial videos. I’d just spend an hour or so every day, slowly working through one project and then another one. Eventually you’ll get the hang of it.


I agree with you!
What is very clear to me is that it’s a premature software. And that was released with the first sales could sustain development.
In the time that I bought had no Trial version, but I bought it because I trust always in Steinberg, beacause I am user of Nuendo already for many years. But really Dorico should only make sense to me in a few 2 years.
Many lack of basic things.
I talked to the biggest arrangers of my country and they agreed with me. They having read in the forum that features software faults.
I feel really sad i have purchased, would have preferred upgrade from 7.5 to 8.5 Sibelius.

I read many post on this forum, and the subject concerning the premature release of Dorico is very often evoked.
I think Steinberg made a serious mistake, I regret it a lot because Dorico is a promising software and many users who wait for it will be disappointed.
Before selling dorico steinberg should warn that is a beta version
I had not tried the trial version because I trusted ! So you should not trust steinberg there? never ?

Another serious problem, poor documentation, when you can’t find solution for doing something, it’s impossible to go further, you stay blocked …

PascalPPPP you said you take 30mn to use completly Sibelius ? i dont believe you …
I was cubase score user during 15 years and when i go to sibelius i need a training course during one week
I think it’s the same for Dorico.
This kind of software always requires a long learning before being able to be completly operational
It is still better if you make a formation with a instructor, so you would have understood that writing score with the keyboard on sibelius is more more faster than the mouse.

For the intuitive, i would say that too many function are given by menu (transposition, multirest, margin and page size etc …) for many action you have to click and navigate in menu …
For example, i’d find how to swap to transposition or not a couple hours ago, but now, i don’t find this anymore, i have to search and navigate to refind them on the mutliple menus …

I think most users who have a problem using Dorico to start with have forgotten how difficult Sibelius was to learn. I say that because it took me probably six months of learning Sibelius 4 (I hadn’t need a score as such after leaving uni 20 years previous…I just put everything into a sequencer or later a DAW). Siblius was one of the most un-intuitive pieces of software I have ever learned. Once you understand the ‘carat’ and popover ideas in Dorico, then it is easier IMHO to learn than Sibelius was.

I definitely recommend to anyone thinking of learning Dorico to watch the videos BEFORE they attempt inputting. It will take a couple of hours. I’d then leave it a day and then watch them again. You’ll absorb so much more this way and quicker.

Yes, I can see people not buying Dorico at the moment because of missing features, but I think the usability is excellent, once you’ve found out how to do what you want. The recent videos have helped enormously, so I hope more (plus a structured series of tutorials), are planned. I remember the struggle I had with Sibelius after moving from Finale - only to find that it was easier to use in many ways once I’d worked through the tutorials.

I am still on the trial though so am still weighing up whether the usability outweighs the missing features - though I suspect I’d miss the pleasure of using Dorico now.

Same here (and I’m used to it from Logic anyway). But I still think there should be a one-click option to hide individual rests (eg by making them transparent).