Software for printing theory sheets, etc

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Postby pianoannie » Sat Dec 03, 2005 9:52 pm

Can anyone recommend what I should buy to print out customized theory sheets, quizzes, etc. I don't want pre-made quizzes, but rather, the
ability to make my own things like:
flashcards
multiple choice questions with various notes or symbols
short melodic or rhythmic samples, on or off staff
and so on.

I also need the ability to save whatever I write out on a disc that other people could use on their computers. Right now, if I type something out using a music font in Word (like maestro font), if the other person doesn't have that font downloaded, it won't work for them.

I am hoping something is out there that would fit my needs for around $200 or less, but if you know of the perfect thing that's more expensive, I'd like to hear about it anyway. And lastly, it needs to not be terribly complicated, as I am not extremely computer literate!

Thanks!! annie
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Postby Stretto » Mon Dec 05, 2005 10:01 am

I'm just trying to research something similar myself. I'm mainly researching notation software for composing, but going to look into whether it has some of the capabilities that you are referring to. Outside of writing music, I was wanting something where one could have notated music and text on the same page. I would like to write some worksheets for students and let them use the software for composing also. I have just started looking into Finale (www.makemusic.com) or Sibelius (www.sibelius.com), both notation software. I just found their websites myself so haven't gotten too far reading what they have to offer. It's probably going to take me quite a while before I actually buy or install anything.

You must have the same "frustration" as me. All the theory material I've found so far already published doesn't match exactly what I want to teach. There's either "unnecessary" information jumbled in or information "left-out". I like a basic streamline approach that covers note i.d., rhythm, scales, chords, chord inversions, and chord progressions in as simplistic and straight-forward of manner as possible. Is there something out there already published like this?
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Postby Dr. John Zeigler - PEP Ed » Mon Dec 05, 2005 11:37 am

The closest thing to a standard format for sharing one's work with another these days is the Adobe Acrobat .PDF format. The PDF file automatically embeds all the required fonts and preserves complicated formatting really well. The overwhelming majority of net users have the free Reader these days.

Buying the current version of Acrobat is one way to go to create PDF files, but it's pretty expensive if you have only a few files you'd like to make available. Most word processors will save directly to PDF (File, Save As..., drop down menu set to PDF), though often with some slight loss of fidelity. You may have to install the necessary conversion files from your original word processor software disk. You can also download a free printer driver from the Adobe site that will create PDF files, mostly pretty well.

Another approach is to make the file available as a Word file. The problem with that is that you have to set Word up to save fonts with the file. This isn't well-documented and is nowhere near as convenient as PDF creation.
All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree. All these aspirations are directed toward ennobling man's life, lifting it from the sphere of mere physical existence and leading the individual towards freedom. - Albert Einstein
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Postby pianoannie » Mon Dec 05, 2005 11:52 pm

Thanks for your thoughts on that! I'll try converting to a pdf and see how that works.
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Postby Dr. John Zeigler - PEP Ed » Tue Dec 27, 2005 9:40 am

One additional bit of information: there are several powerful freeware apps for creating PDF files. Most are printer drivers that have varying amounts of functionality. To find them, go to Google and search the terms "freeware PDF creation".
All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree. All these aspirations are directed toward ennobling man's life, lifting it from the sphere of mere physical existence and leading the individual towards freedom. - Albert Einstein
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