<HEAD><TITLE>eTktab README FILE</TITLE></HEAD>
<P>Author: Jason Sonnenschein
Email: <A HREF=mailto:email@example.com>firstname.lastname@example.org</A></P>
<P>Please read the <A HREF=LICENSE.html>License</A> for this program.</P>
This program is used to write out guitar tablature in the typical
style of ascii tab, often found around the internet. The code is based on
TkTab by Giovanni Chierico. Many of the ideas for the alerations found here
came from emacs tablature mode by Mark R. Rubin. Windows printing handled
by Peter Lerup's <A HREF=http://www.lerup.com/printfile>prfile32</A>.
Guitar icon by Sandy at <A HREF=http://www.aroundthepixel.com>Around
the Pixel</A>. Mac OS X icon by Tomoyuki Miyano
(<A HREF="http://www.din.or.jp/~irondv/">IronDevil</A>). Windows and Mac
binaries were created with Tcl/Tk wrapper programs--Drag & Drop Tclets
Some keybindings changed between version 2.1 and 2.5 to make room for new
features. <B>NOTE: All keybindings specified in this file are true for
U.S. keyboard ONLY</B> and are merely here to illustrate how to use the
program. Look at eTktab's help window after loading a keybindings file
appropriate to your keyboard.</P>
The program will initially run with English and United States keyboard support.
To change the language support or keybindings, do the following:
<LI>Download alternate language and/or keyboard definitions from the eTktab website (or create your own, by editing one of the available files)
<LI>Place the files in a known place on your system (preferably where eTktab resides)
<LI>Select the menu entry 'Edit->Preferences->Language'
<LI>Locate the downloaded .etl file on your system
<LI>Select the menu entry 'Edit->Preferences->Keybindings'
<LI>Locate the downloaded .etk file on your system
<B>Files Saved in Version 1:</B>
The file format changed from version 1 to version 2. eTktab version
two will no longer read or write version 1 files. You can convert
files with the included script (<TT>fileconvert-v1-to-v2</TT>.)</P>
When eTktab is run without an initial document, it will start with an
empty document. The initial document may be for a 4, 5, 6, or 7 stringed
instrument, depending on your 'preferences' settings. New windows pulled
up via keypress will also conform to this default. The menus allow new
documents of any type.
<LI> On <I>Unix</I> machines, an initial file may be loaded by putting the
filename on the command line.
<LI><I>Macintosh</I> and <I>Windows</I> users can double-click on a document
to bring up eTktab with that document.
There are two cursor modes when entering tablature. These can be toggled
via menu or keypress. In 'lead' mode, the cursor is advanced after each
note insertion, and tablature to the right of the cursor is pushed along
ahead of the newly inserted tab. 'Chord' mode will <B>not</B> move the cursor.
You will have to advance the cursor manually, after you have entered all the
notes in the current chord.</P>
In 6 string mode, there are 30 different keysrokes that will put a note
into the tablature. The system they follow is difficult to explain
clearly, but easy to use. It mimics the way a guitarist plays.
24 of the 30 keypresses are relative to where a
'vitual hand' is positioned on the fretboard. The program refers to where the
hand is as the 'base fret.' The base fret can be changed with the
+ and - keys, or via menu.</P>
<P>Below are two example charts of the keys on
a US keyboard. One is for 6-string mode (guitar,) one for bass. Think
of these charts as a guitar neck, laid over part of your keyboard. The
string names are along the top of the chart. The fret numbers are along the
left side. Inside the chart are the keys that correspond to various places
on the fretboard, according to column (string) and row (fret.)</P>
STRING (guitar) STRING (bass)
E A D G B E E A D G
F base+0 | 1 2 3 4 5 6 | F base+0 | 1 2 3 4 |
R base+1 | q w e r t y | OR R base+1 | q w e r |
E base+2 | a s d f g h | E base+2 | a s d f |
T base+3 | z x c v b n | T base+3 | z x c v |
For example: the 's' key inserts base+2 on the A string. If 'base fret'
is currently set to 5, then pressing the 's' key will put a '7' on the
A-string (base+2 is 7 when the base fret is 5.) If you changed the
base fret to 12 and pressed the 's' key again, it would now insert a '14'
(base+2) on the A-string.</P>
Pressing Shift when using a key in the first row will cause it to 'ignore'
the base fret and insert a fret 0 (open) note on that string... So,
Shift-3 will add a '0' on the D string, no matter what value
the base fret is currently set to. These keystrokes are convenient when
tabbing music with notes high on the neck, interspersed with open-string notes.
Note alterations, such as hammer-on and pull-off, may be added and removed
from any note. All their keybindings are Alt-<something>
(Option on <I>Macintosh</I>). Two modifiers are allowed on bar lines...
they are left repeat and right repeat. Notes may only have one modifier,
but bar lines may have both left and right modifiers simultaneously.</P>
The tuning of the stringed instrument is changed with the tuning dialog.
It can be pulled up via the Tuning button, or a keyboard shortcut (typically
Most users will highlight, cut, and paste using the mouse. Bindings for
the mouse should perform as you would expect for your system...
On all systems, you can use the left button to move the cursor, or highlight
regions of tablature. On <I>Windows and Macintosh</I>, shift-left button
extends the highlighted region. On <I>Windows</I>, right button will paste.
On Unix, right button extends the highlighted region and middle button pastes.
Note that mouse clicks need to be within a line of tab. Clicks in the blank
spaces between lines are ignored.</P>
Region highlighting is also available via keyboard, by setting a 'mark,'
then moving the cursor. The same keystroke is used to set and unset the mark.
Cut/paste between documents will only work if they are the same
type (same number of strings.) Tablature pasted into other programs
(word processors, email, etc.) only looks right in <B>non-proportional</B>
fonts, such as Courier.</P>
An 'undo/redo' feature was added in version 2.0. It remembers 10 steps.
Remembering more steps means using more memory. If you have the source...
tune as you see fit.</P>
The remaining key bindings are explained in the help screen, which
may be called up with the help button at the top of the window, or by hitting
'?' or Control-h (Command-h on <I>Macintosh</I>)</P>
Lyrics may be added and edited by selecting Lyrics in the 'Mode' menu.
There are textboxes at the
beginning and end of the document and immediately below each score of
tablature. The end of each textbox is marked with the section symbol ().
This symbol will <b>not</b> show up in cut/paste or printing of lyrics.
In lyrics mode, the keybindings for things like saving, printing,
etc. still work, but other keys now just insert that character in the window
(as in any simple editor.) The user cannot edit any of the tablature while
in lyrics mode, and selecting text for cut/paste can not go beyond the boundary
of a text box. The PageUp and PageDown keys will move the cursor from one
textbox to another. Other cursor movement should work as expected.</P>
<H4>Saving, Exporting, and Printing Files</H4>
The 'Save' feature will save files in eTktab's native file format.
This is the only format the program can load. Use the 'Export' feature
to create a text file of the tablature as it appears on the screen for use
in email, newsgroups, etc. Exported tablature will only look correct in a
<B>non-proportional</B> font, such as Courier.</P>
For all platforms, printing is made possible by external helper programs.
<I>Windows</I> printing is handled by <TT>prfile</TT>. The file
<TT>prfile.ini</TT>, in the eTktab directory, controls its settings when
working with eTktab. <I>Macintosh</I> printing is handled by the Unix
printing command <TT>enscript</TT>, and is only available on OS 10.2 and above
(as <TT>enscript</TT> is not available, or does not work correctly on lower
OS revisions.) <I>Unix</I> users may choose the command line for their
favorite external printing program.</P>
The <I>Macintosh OS X</I> version has some known bugs that cannot be fixed
at this time. Sometimes a button will not be drawn in dialogs, until the mouse
moves over them. Further, keyboard accelerators are not drawn in the file and
edit menus. If you are interested in tracking down these bugs, please help
out the <A HREF="http://www.sourceforge.net/projects/tktoolkit">Tk toolkit</A>