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Show HN: A generator for random ASCIItabs (asciitabs.com)
11 points by rocheio on Apr 8, 2018 | hide | past | favorite | 6 comments

I made this site to help myself practice guitar / music theory and learn the basics of music composition.

It's all written in Go and hosted on an AWS t2.micro instance right now. I haven't implemented any caching yet so we'll see what happens if it gets any traction...

Feedback / bugs / feature requests encouraged. Thanks!

This is a cool tool...but, as a musician of more than three decades, I would discourage new players from spending too much time on tablature.

I'd recommend you jump to traditional music notation for your learning process, ASAP. You're learning new things, anyway, you might as well learn a tool that is generally much more useful. There's a wealth of music and exercises in standard notation available to practice with.

I'm not saying this to be preachy or holier-than-though, or to suggest you can't be a good musician without knowing how to read music. But, standard notation is technically superior to tabs, on nearly every dimension. It provides more information in a smaller space, it is transferable to other instruments and other musicians, it is much faster/easier to read once you are proficient with it, and it provides visual cues about the things that you're currently trying to learn that tablature does not (e.g. you can usually readily discern keys and chords from traditional notation, while it is not at all obvious from tabs until you've read quite a bit of it and mentally or physically applied it to the guitar).

I wish I'd learned traditional notation sooner and with more gusto. I would have been a better musician more quickly if I had.

Thank you for this advice. You make a strong case for standard notation and I'll keep that in mind as I try and advance as a musician. I've found the 'Masters in Tab' series to offer tabs / standard notation interlaced, so perhaps that would be a good way to transition from one to the other (https://www.amazon.com/Spanish-Guitar-Masters-TAB-Intermedia...).

This also makes me think I should focus the website on where ASCIItab excels over standard notation -- editability as opposed to being a precise blueprint for how to play complex compositions. I think offering an in-browser editor would still make this a good tool for novice composers to get a feel for enhancing / creating music before they advance to standard notation.

Doesn't play nice with mobile handsets on portrait orientation. Each row is actually rendered as 3 rows.

A (hacky?) fix would be `overflow-x: scroll` I guess.

Fixed! Thanks. I just ditched the <meta name="viewport"> tag altogether and now pinch + zoom works as expected. That's what I get for copying + pasting HTML templates from old projects.

Pretty cool, thanks for creating this.

A good addition would be audio output, or MIDI export.

From looking at the tabs, this seems mostly aimed at fingerstyle guitar playing, rather than playing with a plectrum. Some parameters to the generation could produce tabs for a wider range of styles.

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