Real Life Rock Band styled piano might help speed up learning to play

by Shayne Rana

It’s a truly inspiring when one witnesses how a form of technology, in this case gaming, influences another stream like creative arts, in this case playing the piano. Games like Rock Band, Guitar Hero and alike have been saying for years that the potential for the games created in this genre would be quite useful in real life adaptations i.e. playing actual instruments. At the university of Ulm (Germany) a couple of very talented pianists Katja Rogers and Amrei Röhlig, along with a group of colleagues have devised an interesting method for trying to teach students to play the piano. They attached a display to an electric piano that feeds information in the form of blocks and lines that flow down into the keyboard lighting up specific keys in conjunction with a tune. Much like the games, users would need to hit the keys at the right time in the right sequence for the tune to be complete.


This set up has been dubbed the Projected Instrument Augmentation system or PIANO for short. Must have taken some thought to get that name. The notes are also color coded to your fingers so you know which one to use when and where. PIANO was designed to help speed up the learning curve and also improve student’s musical expressions. So far the results seem promising. However, not everyone is on board with this train of thought. But like with every great idea, skepticism is bound to be part of the process.

[Via – Newscientist]

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