Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Version 1.3 Submitted to the App Store

I'm pleased to announce that version 1.3 has been submitted to the App Store for approval. This is a huge release and I want to thank our hardworking beta testers and translators for making this all possible.

Here's an overview of what's new in version 1.3!
  • Support for English, Dutch, French and Swedish.
  • USB pedal support using the iPad Camera Connection Kit lets you navigate your set hands-free!
  • Built-in help documentation with automatic updates.
  • More formatting features for chord size, color and style.
  • Set a capo on the song so guitarists and other instruments can play off the same sheet.
  • Auto scroll pages and turn the metronome on and off with a single tap, or with the foot pedal.
  • More iPod-like song selection with the ability to view songs without adding them to a set.
  • Microsoft Word and iWork Pages files now display correctly.
  • Improved song viewer performance that allows you to have bigger sets and more songs.
  • Set your own music in your iPod library to your chord sheets.
  • Preview songs before you import them from repositories.
  • Fixed a bunch of bugs including the set reordering issue.
  • Much improved import support, including better support for ChordPro files.
  • More export options including the ability to export your entire OnSong database for backup.

Monday, June 21, 2010

OnSong Version 1.3 Heading to Beta!

We are getting ready to send out OnSong version 1.3 to the lucky beta community today.  This is a huge update and probably the most significant since the original release.  We had tremendous outpouring of appreciation and feedback from our users.  That's why we do what we do, to help musicians!

Of course, OnSong version 1.2 wasn't without it's issues.  We think we squashed many of those bugs this time around, and added the most requested features that users had asked for.  We are not nearly done with OnSong yet, and have some really exciting things coming soon!

Here's a list of the corrected issues and added features that OnSong 1.3 contains.

Live Features

  • Added the ability to completely navigate a set hands-free with USB foot pedel integration.
  • Added auto scroll pages for songs based on the tempo. This can be toggled using a foot pedal.
  • Decreased the file size of the application by optimizing images and sound assets for faster boot times and less memory footprint.

Song Display Enhancements

  • Increased the performance of song displaying by only drawing the visible and soon-to-be visible songs. This allows sets to be much larger than before.
  • Formatting and notes are now applied to a song directly, as well as the set.
  • Added the ability to adjust how much a page is scrolled when tapped in Settings.
  • Added support for Swedish and other international characters

Improved Song Navigator

  • Updated the user song navigator to have more iPod-like features.
  • Made lots of refinements to the song navigator to make it more solid and easier to use.
  • Users can now select and view a song without putting the song in a set.
  • Users can now divide songs up by category in a new feature called "By Topic".  This searches the user's song library for keywords.
  • Added the ability to browse by song name, artist, key and theme (topic)
  • Added a feature where selecting a song in the viewer highlights the song in navigation to aid in visualizing where the user is in the set.

More Display Preferences

  • Added a feature to allow the user to change the chord font size for chords, color and style independent of lyrics.
  • Added a feature where a capo amount may be set and optionally turned on for guitar players.  This automatically transposes the song.
  • Added the ability to toggle the title and configuration of a song.
  • Increased the maximum font size for lyrics and chords to 30 points from 20 points.

Playback Enhancements

  • Added a toolbar item to quickly start and stop the metronome.
  • Added a "tap to set tempo" feature in the playback area
  • Added a feature that let's users selected a song from their  iPod library manually.


  • Users can now export files write from the song/set viewer.
  • Users can now reimport songs without having to delete song first
  • Added a preview feature to review songs prior to importing from the Internet.
  • Added the ability to export the entire OnSong database to file sharing.
  • Added better handling of importing ChordPro documents.

Built-In Help System

  • Added a brand new help screen with topics. Will be adding topics during the beta period.

Bug Fixes

  • Fixed an issue where Pages and Word docs would display, and then disappear immediately. This has been corrected allowing users to view these file formats.
  • Fixed an issue where "Null" was set as title when importing more than one song
  • Fixed an issue where songs in larger set order themselves.
  • Fixed an issue where tapping too quickly made page navigation confusing.
  • Fixed an issue where if a user tapped too fast, they would go to the beginning of the set.
  • Fixed an issue where users would received a "Database Locked" error when sharing a set twice with the same song.
  • Fixed an issue in the chord builder where selecting a major 7th chord (like Fmaj7) resulted in a dominant 7 (in this case F7) being placed.
  • Fixed issues to make sure that after editing the song chords, the changes where persisted and drawn correctly on the screen.
  • Fixed an issue where after selecting certain chords, the chord selection of the bass note was defaulting to a strange note the next time it is opened. For example, after inserting an Esus4, the chord selection window opens to Esus4/Db, or something similar. This has been resolved.
  • Fixed an issue where the app did not recognize the chord Cb.
  • Fixed an issue where pinching to zoom caused some display issues.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Foot Pedal Navigation Demo

I finally got my iPad Camera Connection Kit in the mail and started right away working on integrating the USB foot pedal I bought. It was easier than I thought it would be.  Check out the YouTube video demo below.

I'm hoping to ship this in version 1.3.  To make this work, you'll need the Apple iPad Camera Connection Kit and the Versa Dual Foot Pedal from PedalPax.com

Take a look and tell me what you think!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Next Version in Active Development

We are happy to announce that OnSong v1.3 is now under activei development!  We have a really long list of features and issues that we are working on, but progress is being made.  We are focusing on the most requested features first. These are primarily navigation and scrolling during a performance.

Navigation is proceeding well and we are adopting a more iPod-like navigation method.  This means that you can view all songs, songs by keyword, artist and key.  You can use keywords as you want for topics or genres.  It's really flexible and it's up to you.

We have had a couple of complaints regarding performance, especially with long set lists.  We think this is fixed and will be testing soon.  We also have heard of reordering issues which have also been addressed.

One feature request that has been made is to use a foot pedal for navigating between songs and scrolling.  We are currently developing a solution that will use a USB foot pedal and the iPad Camera Connection kit to accomplish this.  The app will then support configuring your foot pedal to scroll and flip pages!  These pedals are widely available and are built really well.  I ordered this one for testing: http://www.pedalpax.com/versa-pedal_stealth.htm

We are also looking for volunteers to help translate OnSong into other languages.  If you want OnSong in a different language, please let us know!  We are interested in reaching out to the world with our product.

Thanks to you all who have made OnSong possible.  We are really excited for the next version!