Is Dorico intuitive?

I would like to share a small story here:

Today my 11 year old son, who is playing cello and trombone, asked me, if he could write some music on the computer as well. So far he had no experience with any notation program. We started a new piece with only a single instrument - he wanted to write for piccolo trumpet - and I showed him how to start note entry, enter a key and a time signature, but didn’t give him any further help. I left him alone and when I came back he had wirtten a little piece with 7 instruments, dynamics, articulations, tempo text and a rit.-line at the end. Together we added a title for the piece and his name as composer. I was quite impressed, how easy it seemed to be for him to find everything on his own! He had much fun. My son is not a new Mozart, but his music looks much better than Mozarts handwriting … :slight_smile:


Great story. Thanks for sharing!

Great :smiley:
Another indication of Doricos intuitiveness, is the fact that many forum users seem to have mastered the application without much of a manual

How lovely!

That’s nothing. I left my workstation open with Dorico running one day and my cat not only produced an Avant-Guard lead piece, but also wrote an uncomplimentary letter to the CEO of Avid! :smiley:

And it suggests that some of the problems grown-up users are experiencing lie in their tendency to try to make Dorico work like another program they are familiar with rather than taking it on its own terms…

Or even worse, try to make Dorico work the same as the convoluted inefficient way they use another program, after 10 or 20 year trying things at random instead of actually thinking (or, heaven forbid, reading the manual!)

For example, from the evidence on other forums, there are real users of both of the “big two” notation programs who always enter notes by first creating a note with whatever pitch the program happens to choose (e.g. the same as the previous note) and then moving it one semitone at a time up and down to the pitch they want! (And then they will probably complain that it’s hard to do it that way in Dorico…) Telling them that “if you want to enter a C, just press the C key” just doesn’t fit their mental concept of how notation software is “supposed” to work!

Is he free to help me? :smiley:

Great to hear this, seriously. I suspect that for many of us, the issue is that we have done things a certain for so long on our previous programs that when we can’t get Dorico to do what we want, we think it is the program’s fault. Learning is good - for all of us…


I use to do that in SIbelius, it was quirky but it worked for me. Dorico has helped break that dubious habit forever. It has also made me (finally) buy a portable MIDI controller to help me write. I feel I have now joined the rest of the world!

welcome - we hope you enjoy it here!

I’m probably one of those ‘grown up users’, stuck in old habits and I’m the first to admit that this might be the main cause of not getting used to the new application. However, although I don’t use Dorico at the the moment, I am very, very much involved (or better said, interested) in the discussions about and the further development of the program.
It is my strong opinion that ridiculization (is that the correct english word?) of people who have problems with Dorico doesn’t help the further development of the application. Open-mind discussions and mutual respect do help.

We would say “ridiculing” in English, but your sentiment is correct. :wink: Ridiculing those who don’t find Dorico’s limitations easy (in other words, “Do it Dorico’s way or the highway”) is not very helpful. I didn’t personally have problems with Dorico’s approach to things, just because I tend to be a “do everything with the keyboard” kind of user. My experience however, is not mirrored by others, who find other approaches (such as classic Mac app approach or the Microsoft Ribbon approach) more “intuitive.”

It was indeed a great story. I am planning to do Dorico with my eight year old. Think about it - you want to teach your kid music and then along comes a program with a gorgeous interface that behaves consistent with how music works. If you put a minim and three crotchets in a 4/4 bar you will soon work out what 4/4 means! And then you have a huge array of instruments, symbols which behave in a way that helps to understand their meaning. It’s a musical education dream. And here’s perhaps an even more important thing - it sets a standard. From this point on the developer of every DAW and notation program and even music education program will have people telling them “Can you make it work the way it works in Dorico?” And I reckon that that’s as big a reason why Dorico has changed the world as its existence…

Is it possible to get lessons from your son??!! ;>))

Sorry, but he his busy writing his first opera … :smiley:

Thanks for sharing, HeiPet!

I’m not surprised.

Isn’t the fact that Dorico is written to work the way musicians really work just as important as how specifically ‘intuitive’ it is as well?

I suspect most of us can learn from this experience.

Coming from Finale, and with no previous experience of any Steinberg program, I found Dorico not so much intuitive as mostly delivering, with some trial and error and quite a bit of help from Daniel (thanks!). The most recent release made it easier and more consistent, mainly because of more of the tools remaining selected after use. However, I am still not using it for initial entry of notes, because I can’t get playback to work, and solving that problem is far from intuitive. I intend to use Dorico for layout and printing of my next project, after entry and proofchecking by ear and eye in Finale. I hope to get a description of the playback system in the new Manual when it arrives.

I would think that whether a program is “intuitive” depends on the intuition of the user. Add to that that Dorico is not yet in its intended state of completion.

I do not know whether I will use Dorico for note entry any time soon (I find the pitch-before-rhythm important when actually entering notes–call it a security blanket if you wish), but that does not stop me from learning to use Dorico as it develops and being very impressed with developments (not to mention support) so far.