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									  MacGAMUT’s Two Tutors offer
      Music Theory Basics
Here’s the problem
   Most students enrolled in aural-training courses are still mastering the ins and outs of
music theory. As they work with MacGAMUT to improve their ear-training skills, they
may find their progress slowed because they don’t quite understand a basic term or
concept. But, seated at a computer, it’s awkward to haul out a weighty theory textbook
and struggle through its index, trying to track down the information they need.
Obviously, it would be most convenient for students to have a tutor sitting right next to
them who could quickly provide answers to their basic theory questions.
Two Tutors to the rescue!
    If one readily-available theory tutor would be helpful, think how much better two
resident theory tutors would be. MacGAMUT is pleased to introduce Bill and Stacy Dilts
as the Two Tutors, always available to help your students close the gaps in their basic
theory knowledge. Bill and Stacy have been an important part of MacGAMUT ever since
the company started. Both have taught basic theory courses, so they understand the sort
of help students need. Two heads being better than one, Bill and Stacy put theirs together
and developed an interactive, computerized reference we’re calling MacGAMUT Music
                                   MacGAMUT News

MacGAMUT’s Two Tutors       (Continued)
Theory Basics. This year, every MacGAMUT User Disk includes units from the Two
Tutors covering Intervals and Scales. You can expect to see additional units added over
the next couple of years as we enlarge the resource to include other theory basics.
Not a substitute for a theory text, but a lot more fun
   The Two Tutors’ Music Theory Basics is not a substitute for a theory textbook.
Rather, the format gives students an alternative to the sequential, ordered learning
experience they know from texts. Intended as a “quick reference” to remind students of
points they have learned (if only imperfectly) from the textbook, the Two Tutors have
provided students with a learning environment that is both rich and flexible. Students
may range freely through the materials, starting wherever they wish and moving easily
from one concept to another by clicking on literally thousands of active links throughout.
The “pages” are richly illustrated, both visually and aurally, with hundreds of notated
musical examples students can hear simply by clicking on the illustrations. Students will
value Music Theory Basics as a handy resource when their memory of materials only
recently learned fails them. And many will revel in the freedom to explore the basics of
music theory, constrained only by the limits of their own curiosity.
New how-to videos for students and instructors
    Bill Dilts, whom many of you know as MacGAMUT’s go-to tech support guy, has also
produced a couple of how-to videos which are included on the 2007 release of MacGAMUT.
In a User Disk video, Bill carefully explains how students should manage the all-
important start2003.mgs files where MacGAMUT stores the records of their work with the
software. The Instructor Disk includes a video explaining how instructors may use the
Set Params application to reset the levels where their students begin work at the start of
a new semester. As with the Music Theory Basics, we expect to add more instructional
“how-to” videos over the next few years.
                                                                         Ann K. Blombach

     “I think you have a fantastic program, and I am even more impressed to hear how
intelligently it grades! I’ve always told people that MacGAMUT is far more musical than
other ear-training programs (no random progressions of chords, for one). Also you have
incredible service.
    “MacGAMUT is a fantastic tool, and I always open it up when students come to my
office to get help with ear training. We work through practice problems so I can diagnose
what they’re doing and give them ways to improve. (You wouldn’t believe how my
students are used to hearing the words ‘Make My Own Drill’ coming out of my mouth!).”
                                                                          RH, Washington

                          Music Software International
                           1170 Old Henderson Road, Suite 100
                               Columbus, OH 43220-3623
                             Toll-free phone: 1-800-305-8731
                              Toll-free fax: 1-877-370-1074
                                   MacGAMUT News

               Choose the mountains or the shore for a
               mid-November conference (but not both!)
Decisions, decisions, decisions!
    Music theory instructors have a difficult choice to make this year: whether to attend a
mid-November conference in Salt Lake City or one in Baltimore. Both the ATMI/CMS
joint conference and the SMT conference are scheduled for November 15-18, 2007 (the
weekend immediately preceding “Turkey Day”). For the past many years, MacGAMUT
has exhibited annually at both these important conferences. But, with the two
conferences scheduled simultaneously and thousands of miles apart this year, we’ve had to
accept the fact that we can’t be in two places at the same time.
SMT in Baltimore
   The Society for Music Theory’s Annual Conference will be in Baltimore, Maryland,
November 15-18. Regrettably, MacGAMUT will not be there, at least not in the flesh. We
will miss visiting with all our SMT friends, and we will miss pigging out on Chesapeake
Bay seafood (recalling crab cakes to die for!). But MacGAMUT will still have a physical
presence at SMT-Baltimore, because we are furnishing the tote bags distributed at
registration. For more info about the SMT 2007 Conference, please click the “2007
Conference” link on the SMT website: <>.
ATMI/CMS in Salt Lake City
   During that November 15-18 time slot, the MacGAMUT staff will be in beautiful Salt
Lake City, exhibiting at the joint conference of the College Music Society and the
Association for Technology in Music Instruction. This will be the fiftieth national
conference for CMS, and special activities are planned to celebrate the occasion. You’ll
find all the details about the ATMI/CMS 2007 Conference on the CMS website at
   Should you opt for a mid-November visit to Salt Lake City, we hope you will take a few
minutes from your busy conference schedule to stop by the MacGAMUT booth in the
exhibits area. We always welcome the opportunity to visit with old friends and to meet
face-to-face many of the people we’ve known only as names on our mailing list, voices on
the phone, and e-mail correspondents.
   As always, the MacGAMUT display will be hard to miss; we’ll likely be the only
exhibitor with helium filled balloons floating above our booth. Spot those balloons, and
you’ll echo Brigham Young’s words when he first glimpsed the Salt Lake Valley in 1847,
“This is the place!”
                                   MacGAMUT News

Why are you still shipping MacGAMUT 2003
when the year is now 2007?
     Actually, MacGAMUT software is constantly evolving. Ann is always working to
improve the product for both students and instructors, and this year’s MacGAMUT 2003
is far from the product we originally released in 2003. Over the intervening years, Ann
has fixed the few minor “bugs” users have uncovered, she has continued to refine the
grading parameters, she has introduced new Presets and Libraries designed to
complement The Musician’s Guide texts published by Norton, and she has updated the
software to run on both Mac OS X and Windows Vista.
    But Ann doesn’t think that changes she makes to MacGAMUT in order to keep the
software running smoothly, or to coordinate with a textbook, or to accommodate new
computer operating systems should count as new versions. This means that, unlike many
other software products, you don’t have to buy a new version of MacGAMUT just because
you have upgraded your computer to a new operating system. Instead, MacGAMUT treats
these software revisions as updates, making them available for free download from the
Web. In other words, anyone who bought MacGAMUT 2003 in the year of its first release
can still be running the latest version of MacGAMUT today at no additional cost.
    On the other hand, when Ann adds a new major component to MacGAMUT, that year’s
release is a new version. Thus, when she added the new Rhythmic Dictation component to
the MacGAMUT software package in 2003, that year’s release was a new version and was
considered an UPGRADE rather than an update. But, since every software purchaser is
entitled to download the next UPGRADE (and all subsequent updates) free, anyone who
bought MacGAMUT as long ago as autumn of 2000 can still be running the very latest
version of MacGAMUT 2003 today at no additional cost.
    During the past year, Ann has been busy designing and programming new mastery-
based Written and Keyboard drills to complement the mastery-based aural-training drills
in Intervals, Scales, and Chords. These new components are modeled on the current
student-directed, non-mastery-based Written and Keyboard drills in the current software.
But instructors will be able to make Written and Keyboard drill assignments, and the new
components’ record-keeping will make students accountable for successfully completing
the required levels.
    Ann anticipates including the new mastery-based Written and Keyboard components
in next year’s release (the 20th anniversary of MacGAMUT’s original release in 1988!), and
that release will constitute a new version. As always, anyone who purchased
MacGAMUT 2003 will be entitled to download a free UPGRADE to this new release (and
they may download all subsequent updates to that release as well). No need, therefore, for
concern that your students buying MacGAMUT 2003 this year will be “stuck” with
outdated software next year.

   “I have nothing but good things to say about the service I’ve had from the MacGAMUT
team over the years! If all companies treated their customers as you folks do, the world
would be a lot nicer place!”
                                                                              MM, Taiwan

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