Got a spare five minutes? Want to do something fun. Then take a quick look at Gutenberg Variations, a free iPhone app which takes your typed text and turns it onto sheet music. And then plays it.
It’s a little like one of those apps which turn images into ASCII art, only with letters and music instead. It’s dead, dead simple: tap some words into a text filed, hit return and you’re whisked off to the stave view. Here the letters are broken down into individual notes, kind of like audio pixels, and they play.
You’ll soon discover that writing your name/swear words/the name of your blog will yield disappointing results. Much better are sequences with some rhythm, like 01010 or ililil. Even better is punctuation: / will give you a nice little rising trill.
The playback speed is controlled by tilting the iPhone, but as the tilting is done in portrait orientation and the interface is in landscape, this gets a little confusing. Also confusing is the navigation. There are no indications of how to get between screens. Swiping is the answer.
As I said, the app is free and diverting. If you’re a musician, it could even be used to make something ready to be inserted into another app.
I’m just waiting to finish work today: I plan on taking a photo, converting it into ASCII and then pasting it into Gutenberg Variations.
- Source iTunes App Store
- Thanks Nakamura!