using arrow keys to navigate between notes

hi there,

Something unusual happens and I’m not sure if it’s a feature or a bug – when I use my computer’s arrow keys <-- and --> to scroll between notes, Dorico sometimes skips up a part or down a part instead of staying in the same part. It feels rather random – what am I doing wrong? I apologise if this has been answered elsewhere, I’m not sure how to search for it.

Thank you!

You are not doing anything wrong - using the arrow will select the next item that is the closest “field” (I may be using a slightly incorrect term). Sometimes you can move left or right, and it will move pitch by pitch’ other times not. Been discussed here a lot (and no, I don’t know how to find the threads, either!). But it is not a bug. Probably not the answer you were seeking, but there it is!

OK, so if I’m editing a long-winded piano passage, a massive run of continuous notes, and I need to scroll through to a certain note - or I’m auditioning it note-by-note – is there a better way to do something like this?


I’m afraid not, at least not at the moment.

You can search for “whack-a-mole.” The issue you’re seeing isn’t exactly the same, but it’s tangentially related and comes up on that same thread.

It drives me a little nuts, I admit.

You aren’t doing anything wrong.

Here is a list of earlier discussions about this, and a comment from Daniel:

Thanks, gents!

… but I’d still love to know more about the logic of how the arrow keys select the next object – it’s not random, right, it’s logical, rule-based, right? therefore, what are the rules?

I’m presently typing something out (from paper) and a quick way to proof-read all of the notes is to scroll through note-by-note while listening – but I can’t do it because of the way this is set up.

grrr. thank you!

The general idea was that it moves to the “nearest” graphical object in the score, in the general direction of the arrow key you press.

Daniel has said it’s “hard to predict” exactly what will be selected next (see so even if there was a complete description of the rules somewhere, knowing what they are might not be very useful in real life.

There have been plenty of complaints about this, and as Daniel said in the link I gave earlier, “We do plan to address this in future by implementing a new method for navigation in Write mode.”

I hope this rewrite does not take too much time.
This is one of the few things that is really driving me crazy again and again. There is simply no acceptable reason for Dorico to jump from the end of a flute part to the beginning of the next bar of a totally different instrument, many staves down.
Please make “right” mean “right” and not “right and somewhere up or down, who the %&§ knows”.

hmm… but “hard to predict” still isn’t random, what is the rule? It simply untrue that it jumps to the nearest graphical object – why would it jump from the third beat of measure 3 to a tempo marking in measure 1? That’s not “nearest” by any measure.

As I understand it, the reason is that all visible objects in the score have invisible boxes around them that define their boundaries. If we could see these boundaries, some would look intuitive, and some wouldn’t.

The “next” behavior is finding the next boundary of a defining box for an object, which may protrude any which way. Hence the sometimes unpredictable selection.

I couldn’t understand till now a Dorico behaviour while using arrow keys as well. If I have a piano passage with mixed single notes and chords in there, I would expect: pressing a right arrow key (while one of the notes in a chord is selected) will bring me to the NEXT note to the right (in a same voice). If I press down arrow key, Dorico would select a lower note in this chord. If it is a bottom note, Dorico would select a lower voice. If there is just a single voice, Dorico would select a next system…etc. What I am definitely NOT expect Dorico jumps (sometimes!) to the another voice or selects a lower note in chord, while I am pressing a right arrow key…So if I would like to check quickly a piano passage while I am pressing a right key, I cannot trust my ears. I MUSST look at the score very carefully if Dorico follows a selected voice…

Sounds like we need a #showustheboundaryboxes campaign…

I’m quite confident that the new feature to navigate between notes in write mode will be far more elegant than a crowded screen with boundaries… My 2c :wink:

Nah, we need the UI of the original computer adventure game:

You are now in a maze of twisty little passages, all different.
You are now in a maze of little twisty passages, all different.
You are now in a little maze of twisty passages, all different. <etc …>

For what it’s worth: in my experience CTRL+ arrowkey almost always moves the selection to the next bar of the same instrument.
(I wanted to write always and then I tried it out, but it doesn’t seem to work if the current selection is a single bar rest).

That’s correct, because Dorico doesn’t see a multi-bar rest as a “thing.” You also can’t Click and Shift-click a range that starts with a multibar… or use Select to End of Flow with a multibar selected.

I think Heba’s talking about a single bar rest in a layout where multi-bar rests aren’t shown, Dan, though everything you say about multi-bar rests is of course accurate. Anyway, I don’t think it’s giving too much away to say that the next major release of Dorico features overhauled navigation via the arrow keys in Write mode.

Oops, quite right. Reading is apparently hard for me these days…
So happy to watch and to try:)