As you know, I love music theory, and occasionally contribute lessons to UG, as well as regularly on the forums.

What you may not know is that I also have a long background in systems software development ... my designs have turned up in cars, laptops, set top boxes, mobile phones, .... I love technology. Most recently I'm heavily involved in technology for TVs coming out in Europe soonish, which lets TVs and tablets talk to each other, so the tablet can show content related to what the TV is doing.

Way-back (2001), I invented a simple way to teach harmony visually, to help a buddy out, and this eventually led to a book (around 300 pages). Then I gradually got into implementing some software to better teach this stuff, but also to help me. This was all in my spare-time (evenings, weekends) while working full-time. Based on encouragement and feedback, and the appalling state of school music education in the UK, I decided to do this for real and started a company (MusicIncite Ltd) back in 2013 while still working full-time. Since then there's a lot of interest. so I've taken a risk, and for the past year, I have gone part-time (miss the money!!) to concentrate on this software, emuso (TM). aimed at helping (would-be) musicians.

We're reaching an exciting point for us, which I'm really happy and proud of, and thought I'd share with you what's happening, and what emuso does as of now (it's not quite product standard, but very close).

emuso brings a new approach to teaching theory concepts around melody, harmony and rhythm. It supports fully interactive lessons. Many man years of effort have gone into this (for fun and my own use initially). We're doing this because we are sickened by the way that music education is taught at school level (ridiculous failure rates) in the UK, but also because we have found a way to get absolute novices to start playing with knowledge and confidence from pretty much day one ... my 8 year old was playing major scale and triads from it, in a couple of keys that she chose, on piano, in just over 6 minutes ... no music notation, no note names. Instead our own invented notation that can be mastered in around 10 minutes, and understood immediately. We're applying natural learning concepts (think for babies to youngsters get to speak and understand the world visually long beore reading any books ... then think how usuakl teaching methods expect you to learn to read first, effectively, before you get to learn to play music ... get my point?)

To quote my buddy Sean from another thread, emuso shows you how to fish ... it doesn't give you the fish!

But it's intended for anyone that has struggled with learning harmony etc from the usual text books, and lost interest. That is a crazy situation which we believe we have fixed.

This is a method I invented back in 2001(?) while in South Africa to explain basic theory to a friend of mine's nephew who was a rock player with zero knowledge.

emuso can also provide gruelling practise workouts (e.g. use its rhythm generator to create a few bars of an arpeggio, being played using different subdivisions in each bar, and leave a couple of bars muted in the middle (to really bring one's internal timing awareness up to scratch). We worked with one of the UK's top drummers, Paul Elliott to knock this into shape, and then added some novel twists! Create the workout ... share it with a mate.

emuso also provides ear training, and we're experimenting with using digital audio (e.g. voice or guitar) as a means of interacting (test your singing for example). But we're going to need to hire a DSP expert (I know enough here to be dangerous!)

Finally, it's also a reference (chords, scales ...). Load up, and edit if you want, to create new voicings or scales or arpeggios, share your invention ... use it with your practise ... you get the picture. Ditto with lesson content.

This is running on PC/Mac, and prototyped on Android ... we are going for funding shortly (around 6 weeks time) on KickStarter, and are planning what products to release when (once funded) ... and in particular when (if) to tackle the tablet/mobile market. This will affect our hiring of engineers. It will also pay for content (lesson) generation.

We will be running pretty much continuous user trials, and the guys that contribute on KickStarter get earlly access, free license, free lessons (depending on contribution) ... they can help shape the final products.

We are working on PR now with a design agency who absolutely love what we're up to, so lots of info will be available (web site, tutorial videos ...) and made public (only private stuff out there for now).

I'd love to hear from any of my UG buddies that may be interested.