Dear ThinkMusic Technology: Nice “concept” video, but can you deliver?

Posted: January 8, 2013 in annotation, apps, iPad, music notation, sheet music, tablet, Twitter, video, websites

ThinkMusic Technology’s video about its upcoming music notation app created quite a splash, but now it’s getting some backblow due to assertions on the Sibelius Blog that the video is not a demo of a working app, but rather a simulation created using Sibelius and GoodReader. Related posts on the Sibelius Blog:

Makers of music handwriting app video used Sibelius and GoodReader to create dramatization
A new tablet app that recognizes handwritten music?

As usual, Chris Russell also has some good insights about the situation: Some thoughts regarding that “new” notation app by Think Music…

Frankly, I’m a bit disappointed. ThinkMusic Technology should have given full disclosure in the video that it was a simulation (kind of like those TV ads for phones and tablets that say “simulated display”) – and then asked for our support for their Kickstarter project (if there actually is one). By posting their video without any disclaimers or commentary, they succeeded at getting my attention initially, but now their credibility with me has eroded a bit. My day job experience here in Silicon Valley has taught me that it’s one thing for a tech start-up to come up with a good concept, but actually delivering on that concept is an entirely different matter. In fact I should probably know better than to take such a video at face value – anyone can put together a sexy “concept” video. In addition, it’s a bit sketchy that a company would use a competitor’s product to create marketing material for their own product that doesn’t exist yet.

Nonetheless, gauging from the response, ThinkMusic Technology hit the nail on the head when it comes to the concept itself – we are all drooling for an app that does what’s shown in the video. For my part, I’ll keep tabs on what they’re doing, though perhaps a bit more warily… There’s a good chance that I would support a Kickstarter project too, but first I would do some due diligence on who runs the company, their background and bona fides, and their track record in these sorts of ventures. (Side note: This made me curious about whether Kickstarter has safeguards to prevent project creators from simply absconding with the money, and the answer is, um, not really…so do your homework, people!)

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