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Musical notation redesigned - overdue or overcomplicated?

Blake West has reinvented musical notation, making it easier to learn, faster to read, and simpler to understand. What do you think of this new look for notes and quavers?

hummingbird notes
Traditional musical notation above, the new-look notation below. Is this a brilliant reinvention or a design classic best left alone?

Those of us who've learned to play an instrument will know the woes of memorising musical notation. It's similar to riding a bike - once you've got it, you've got it. But what if there was an easier way to learn to read music?

  • There are more great pictogram designs in these style guides

Created by Blake West, Hummingbird claims to be easier to learn, faster to read, and simpler for even the trickiest music. The traditional music note has been replaced by a variety of circles, with each note portrayed by a clever symbol. For example, the note 'F' is represented by a 'Full' circle.

The length of notes have also been simplified by using line lengths to represent the amount of time to hold the note down. Is this the start of new musical notation or are notes a design classic best left alone?

hummingbird notes
hummingbird notes
hummingbird notes
hummingbird notes
hummingbird notes

Watch the introductory video for Hummingbird on Vimeo.

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Let us know your thoughts in the comments box below!

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