Change ringing software
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Modern day change ringing software
The Central Council of Church Bell Ringers keeps a list of all "current change ringing software" There are four general types of software used in connection with change ringing.
The most common use of software in change ringing is composition proving. This type of software is used to take the tedium out of proving change ringing compositions: that is, checking that no change within the composition is repeated. The software will perform the checks required to prove a composition in milliseconds, rather than the hours or days required for paper based proving methods. Often these programs can also analyse compositions to determine the musical rows that they contain.
In recent years, more advanced tools have emerged which can assist the human composer in other ways. These range from pure composition-generation programs such as BYROC and Elf, to more sophisticated programs such as SMC32, which can work alongside the human composer, for instance by linking together existing musical blocks which the composer has created.
Simulator software's original use was to allow the practicing of change ringing in the tower, but is perhaps used more in the home now, using a dumbbell or keyboard. There are different scenarios that can now be accommodated by the latest software. Sensors are used to give temporal information to the computer.
- Single or multiple learner silent practice with computer producing sound of the bell.
- Whole band silent practice with computer producing sound of all the bells.
- Practice on more bells than you have with the computer adding in the extra bells.
- Practice methods that are more advanced that your band is capable with the computer filling in all the bells.
Keeping records is very important to some change ringers. Records are often kept in the following areas:
- Grabs (towers visited)
- Quarter peals.
An up-to-date directory of towers is often used to plan outings and, used in conjunction with the record keeping software to decide what towers still need to be grabbed.
History of change ringing software
The earliest known change ringing programs can be traced back to the 1950s. Some of this history is traced in this article on software firsts http://www.ringing.info/shaggy.html
- "Bell Conductor" software to help to achieve harmony and melody through visualization of a ringing sequence from text and midi files
- "Ringing Master" bell ringing composition proving, simulator and record keeping software
- "Abel" simulator software
- "Excalibur" composition proving software
- "Beltower" bell ringing simulator, prover, composer, method/touch editors and printing software
- "Virtual Belfry" high-resolution photographic animation of change ringing bells, simulator, ropesight tutor
- "Visual Method Archive (VMA)" - simple, FREE, web-based tool to view blue lines for methods and experiment with generating your own
- "Elf" - online lead and half-lead spliced composing engine
- "Stedman Pricker" - assists the Stedman composer in pricking and proving compositions on all numbers
- Smart Phone Apps for Ringers - directory of free and paid for smart phone apps for bell ringing