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progress on upgrading the site

25 April 2022 - Pages and tabs tested ok on the Brave browser; needs extension to play MIDIs.


Praise for Classtab on Reddit varies from 'super low tech' to 'ugly as fuck'.
The size of the main page occcasionally causes problems.
Apologies for Classtab not being optimised for cell phones and tablets.
At some point a site upgrade looks inevitable.
I'd like to acknowledge the many generous offers of help received over the years,
and give my apologies for not having taken up most of them.
(I prefer tabbing to upgrading web sites, and need more prodding.)
However if developers come up with stuff, I'm happy to give it a try.

some of the offers of help received for developing the website

(This list is not complete - any I've missed out, please let me know)

using framesets - Jim Cranwell - October 2004
- demo

tab printing utility - Curzio Vasapollo - September 2005
(no longer available)

graphics makeover - Tolobek - September 2006
(image files) - sample logo/title - sample intro

site redesign - ? - March 2007
(image file) - sample home page

CSS makeover - Vicktor S - December 2007
(demo no longer available)

Android app - Ryan Guthrie - March 2010

site redesign - Miguel Jimenez - July 2012
(demo no longer available)

Android app - James - December 2012

classtab logo - Karl Duckett - March 2013
- current logo

pdf version of the site - Louc Guillaume - February 2014

site update - Arthur Canal - June 2014
offer to make the site searchable and categorized

scrolling app / utility - Maxime Bergeron - August 2014
- current page
possible updates - clean up code, maybe rewrite in Python, bug list on Discord (see below)

Android app - Marcus P - June 2016
- screenshot
- GitHub page

html code update - Marcus - July 2016

site redesign - Brandon Weaver - September 2016
- 'heavy beta' site
- GitHub page
- tools for extracting metadata from classtab

help with coding and developing features - Nicolas Calle - May 2017

Discord server - June 2017
server name - Classtab (invite on request)
still alive, but not very active - now has 8 members!

CSS makeover - Gerald Rivas - February 2018
- demo site

foreign language support offered - Luc R. Boel Linger (European languages) - 2018

dark mode extension - Sean Alexander Free - December 2019
- Chrome web store

site redesign - Nate Brooks - December 2019

foreign language support offered + app development - Yan (Asian languages) - 2020

development of e-paper guitar tab reader - Doug Hoyte - 2021
- Tabplate

site redesign - Sergio Villamarin - 2021

site development - Wolfram Rong - 2021

developing a tool to translate tabs to a format for generating scores - Nick Kinder - 2022

help with coding - html & JS - Abel - 2023

miscellaneous thoughts on developing the site

some people prefer the current page style, so a simplified (downloadable) version could still be available

possible meta data: LHF, RHF, key signature, tuning, time signature, tempo, tab date, difficulty level,
tab author (name, email), style/era of music, tab history (corrections, updates),
composition date, different versions of tab, solo/duo/trio/quartet etc

option for random choice of tab?

different language versions?

options for discussing tabs? (wiki? forum?)

option for submitting new tabs and corrections online?

separate app(s) for mobiles and tablets? server-side device detection?

queries about a new site -
- will it still work with older (legacy) and text-only browsers?
- will it be machine-translatable and usable by non-English speakers? (eg using Google translate)
- will it be easy to navigate by people with common types of colour blindness?
- will it have a global edit facility? (eg for changing a tabber's email address in multiple tabs)
- will it incorporate Google site verification?
- how will the site integrate with the scrolling app?
- is a search facility needed? (or maybe use Google site search?)
- will it work ok with mobiles and tablets?
- how easy will it be to move the site to a new web host if the designer is no longer involved?
- will the site come top of search engine results for the query term "classical guitar tablature"?
- will individual tabs be indexable directly by search engine robots? (most traffic comes via Google searches)
- but above all, will it be easy to maintain on an everyday basis?

is a maximum of 80 characters a line for tabs still optimal? if not, what is?
(do people still use fixed character width printers?)

why are the tabs in ASCII plain text format?
- small file size (not many bytes)
- plain text will probably be in use long after other tab formats have disappeared
- ASCII is an international non-proprietory standard and is readable by inbuilt commands on most operating systems
- can be viewed by any text editor, browser or word processor that uses a standard European character set
- isn't vulnerable to malware and viruses
- easy to edit and customise
- disadvantage: (strictly speaking) it only has standard characters (eg no accents)
- disadvantage: it's difficult to generate a MIDI file from the tab (and vice versa)
- disadvantage: it's difficult to generate a score from the tab (and vice versa)

further discussion

You are welcome to discuss this on the Facebook Group, or to email me your thoughts about it.

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revised & validated (HTML 3.2) 24 March 2024