UI: Simplify the Entry Mode menu by removing the Delete mode

edited August 2014 in Symphony Pro

This suggestion is part of a series of related suggestions for improving the Ipad user experience  when entering notes manually into the SP score. Improvements generally mean fewer menu levels to navigate, a user context that stays more spatially focused on the score on the screen, and fewer keystrokes to get entry jobs done.

Currently SP allows users to choose an Entry Mode (insert / select / delete) from a button on the left side toolbar. Tapping the current entry mode button pops out a menu showing the three possible modes. Tapping a menu choice enables that mode, and collapses the menu. 

Although functional, the current menu and modes are not optimal because of the delete mode. 

First, a separate delete mode is quite non-standard in the digital world, because normal UI design calls for deletion to be done by selecting something, and then deleting it. SP already provides normal selection functions for selecting notes, bars, and ranges, as well as versions of the normal cut (delete)/copy/paste submenus. 

Second, the presence of delete as a third option on the Entry Mode menu prevents the menu from being a simple toggle button to flip between insert and select modes with a single tap. (Currently it takes two taps to change a mode – one to pop out the menu, and one to select the desired mode.) 

Proportionally speaking, I think I use the insert mode _at least_ 10 or 100 times more often than select mode, and probably 1000 more times than the delete mode (because I never use the delete mode). Probably most users who are focused on the score notes prefer to keep their context focused on the score, and would therefore use the normal select+cut mechanisms for deleting notes, bars, or ranges.

A better approach would be to remove the delete entry mode completely, and let the normal select+cut deletion methods do the deletion work. Then the Entry Mode menu could be implemented as a simple toggle to flip between insert and select modes. 

If this change was completed, users would benefit from a 50% tap count saving when switching modes, a simpler menu structure, and a simpler and more efficient UI experience.


  • Like you, I almost always use select+cut instead of delete mode. Since I continually switch between insert and select modes, a single-tap toggle would greatly speed up my workflow.
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