The Piano is Dead

A private piano recital

Not so long ago, everyone was chattering about this new gadget called “the piano.” You could create complex music in your home for the price of a cow. Music would be transformed!

Three years on, it seems the piano-chatter has stopped. Why? I decided to investigate.

I went to the home of Mr. Stewart Bell, musician and piano enthusiast. He sat me at his piano and showed me how he played a few of his favourite ditties. Then I tried. Dear me, the “music” I made nearly broke my ears! The interface is dreadfully complicated. It’s no wonder most of the people who tried it gave up quickly. Clearly the piano must be made easier to use: one should be able to produce lovely music within the first ten minutes.

I also found the whole process of “playing” the piano to be dull and frustrating. It should be more fun. Perhaps they could add an achievements system? One could get points for using the piano. Your points could be posted to a global score board, so you could compete with your friends. Prizes could be awarded to the top-scorers.

Speaking of friends, the whole piano experience needs to be integrated with Facebook. Twitter too. Maybe even Flickr: you could post photos of yourself playing the piano for people to tag and comment upon.

Lastly, the graphics on the piano sheet music are so 19th-century! Making them 3D would definitely snazz them up. Kids these days are turned off by things that are old (e.g. Alice in Wonderland, and Lego blocks).

Frankly, even if all my suggestions are heeded, I doubt the piano can be saved.

The piano is doomed. The piano is dead.

Disclaimer: If you have no sense of humour, the above post was a work of satire, inspired by the recent blogospheric bemoaning of the Second Life user interface. Image credit: Moritz von Schwind, 1868. The man at the piano is Franz Schubert.

One thought on “The Piano is Dead

  1. Nice analogy Troy! Sadly ADD geeks have neither the time, talent, discipline, nor the inclination to actually bother learning something nowdays.Yes, SL is a lag infested bug ridden pos vw, but it's still the best lag iinfested bug ridden pos vw out there;-)

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