MuseScore is a sheet music editor that has become popular among music lovers for a long time. The program first appeared in 2002, and its last version was released in February 2021. The author of the program is Werner Schweer, who separated it into a separate application in 2002. MuseScore is a music score editor with the ability to quickly enter notes from both a computer keyboard and an external MIDI keyboard. The program is licensed under the GNU GPL. This license was created back in 1988 and confirms that the subject has transferred the software developed by him or owned by him into the public domain.
In 2020, the program had a paid subscription, which was not particularly part of the plans of its developers, but became a forced measure in response to the claims of some production companies in terms of observance of copyright for musical content.
The first thing that impresses is the simplicity of the program (simplicity, of course, is relative, because a normal sheet music editor cannot be quite simple). In half an hour you are already typing notes, in another two hours you feel confident in standard operations. From time to time, naturally, problems also appear, but after a week the program is already fully mastered. Most of the operations are intuitive, many actions are familiar from text editors – line breaks, pages, the concept of text style, and so on.
The program is very convenient for typing fragments and musical examples due to the ease with which breaks and spaces in the text are inserted, including within the same system. Problems can arise with late medieval notation and with some areas of the modern avant-garde.
The program is available for Mac, Windows and Linux. Its developer Werner Schweer wrote it in C ++ and provided development support. Today, thanks to global collaboration, it is available in 15 languages, including Spanish, Swedish, English, Danish, German, Finnish, Dutch, French, Galician, Hindi, Italian, Portuguese, Brazilian-Portuguese, Russian and Turkish. This makes it possible for its wide distribution throughout the world.
The fact that the program is predominantly free, multifunctional, intuitive makes it very popular all over the world. It has become an indispensable tool for those who write music on their own for personal use, as well as for professional composers. Thanks to this program, many pieces of music have already been created.
The music editor is only partly a music program, because its main task is to draw graphic symbols and other squiggles. The relationship between notes and sound (i.e. music itself) is very indirect, it depends on many informal agreements – tradition, style, and even the individual characteristics of the author.