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Author Topic: Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?  (Read 1387 times)

arlo

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Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?
« on: September 17, 2018, 08:39:57 PM »
The fundamental goal of BandHelper is to reduce the time and effort required to operate a band. But like all technology, sometimes it seems to suck up more time than it saves. That's what I'd like to focus on for the coming months. What are some areas where you find BandHelper making your life harder instead of making it easier? I'm looking for examples of workflows or tasks that are less efficient than they could be.

Uwe

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Re: Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2018, 05:31:23 AM »
Hi Arlo,
thats a brilliant idea!

I don't want to repeat the "simple Mode & favourites" stuff herre, as it has already been discussed lately.

It would be great for me to use Bandhelper better as a bridging tool between the me as the admin of the band and those members that are reluctant to use any technologiy at all (they will always be there....).

As I do have all Information in one place (BH), it would be great to make simpler use of this information in printing (or sending print files, pdf) easily to the other members.

so, bass tabs and lyrics to the bassman, lyrics and chords and tabs to the guitarist and so on.
easy and straight forward. the pdf that is used for printing a setlist is a great start here.

one option could be: select a song, select some docs, click send an send out a well formatted pdf  with a starting page containing the songs details.

thats for now
cheers
Uwe

arlo

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Re: Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2018, 10:50:29 AM »
so, bass tabs and lyrics to the bassman, lyrics and chords and tabs to the guitarist and so on.
one option could be: select a song, select some docs, click send an send out a well formatted pdf  with a starting page containing the songs details.

If you just want to send a packet of songs, you can use the new (since June) song sharing feature at Repertoire > Set Lists > [set list name] > Share Songs. (You can do the same with a smart list.) This is really easy if you want to share the same info with everyone.

If you want to customize this for different bandmates (e.g., bass tabs versus guitar tabs), we would need a way to edit another users' personal fields, and then a way to select a different user's data on the share page. That would be easier if you were doing this this using different documents for each bandmate, rather than the personal lyrics and chords fields.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2018, 10:53:34 AM by arlo »

JerryK

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Re: Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2018, 01:59:32 PM »
+1 for simple mode and shortcuts/favourites

Ruckman65

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Re: Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2018, 05:07:26 PM »
Being in a duo, there is far less need for me to simplify things for my bandmate. In fact, my bandmate still runs SetList Maker and hasn't updated that since he installed it about five years ago. I am more than happy with the functionality that BandHelper provides. It has taken some time to work out a lot of the intricacies of the midi component but, all in all, the app does everything I need it to do.

Sonnyboy666

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Re: Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?
« Reply #5 on: September 19, 2018, 02:01:42 AM »
I would also vote for a "simple mode".
Maybe it would also help, if the overall layout would be a little bit prettier. :D  If you open the App, it's very, sorry for this, ugly!
Just a lot of text and some very simple icons.  Lika a database (which it is, i know that!)
If the look and feel of the app is a bit prettier, that would also help for non-techies to spend some time learning the app.
I know the functions of BandHelper are the most important things, but maybe a nicer UI will adress some people who don't like to many text, but more pictures. (Like the whole youth today! ;) )

I think it would also help if we have a new field for the users with the function in the band. e.g. drummer, singer, guitarist and so on.
So it will be possible to send only documents to the e.g. drummer and you don't have to look who it is. (if you have a lot of bandmates or guest-players)

Just some thoughts from me...

Greetings,
Ingo

arlo

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Re: Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?
« Reply #6 on: September 19, 2018, 07:49:37 AM »
Quote
I would also vote for a "simple mode".
Maybe it would also help, if the overall layout would be a little bit prettier. :D  If you open the App, it's very, sorry for this, ugly!
Just a lot of text and some very simple icons.  Lika a database (which it is, i know that!)

I'm working on some ideas for that. Not a drastic change, but hopefully a subtle improvement will help.

Quote
I think it would also help if we have a new field for the users with the function in the band. e.g. drummer, singer, guitarist and so on.
So it will be possible to send only documents to the e.g. drummer and you don't have to look who it is. (if you have a lot of bandmates or guest-players)

That's on my to do list for the coming months.

Uwe

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Re: Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?
« Reply #7 on: September 20, 2018, 05:13:25 AM »
If you want to customize this for different bandmates (e.g., bass tabs versus guitar tabs), we would need a way to edit another users' personal fields, and then a way to select a different user's data on the share page. That would be easier if you were doing this this using different documents for each bandmate, rather than the personal lyrics and chords fields.

I think making a pdf with header data like its in the packet version, just for one song and from the song edit page with lyrics/chords and selectable documents that are attached to the song to add to the pdf would make a great start.

arlo

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Re: Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?
« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2018, 04:55:47 PM »
Today's app releases make the Shortcuts sections available to everyone. The utility setting to turn this feature on and off is also gone, but you can selectively turn off the Shortcuts sections by lowering the Settings > Appearance > Menu Shortcuts settings to 0.

http://www.bandhelper.com/support/release_notes.html

I think it would also help if we have a new field for the users with the function in the band. e.g. drummer, singer, guitarist and so on.
So it will be possible to send only documents to the e.g. drummer and you don't have to look who it is. (if you have a lot of bandmates or guest-players)

The user edit page now has a Role field, which will be displayed in all the user pickers throughout BandHelper. You can also use the Sort Order field to group users together -- for example, to put all your drum subs together. This does not function like a user access group as you mentioned -- you still have to assign documents to individual users -- but I put that on my wish list.

mikejarjoura

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Re: Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?
« Reply #9 on: February 19, 2019, 06:22:45 PM »
Hi Arlo,

Great work on Band Helper.  I love it.  I'd like to add my bandmates into band helper, but I'd like to just restrict them to just getting the set lists and seeing the calendar.  Are you imagining setting the options for limits on what can be seen?

arlo

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Re: Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?
« Reply #10 on: February 19, 2019, 08:36:58 PM »
The options are all on the Account > Users > Edit pages of the website. You can't restrict someone to just seeing set lists and the calendar. You can set them to read-only so they can't edit anything, and turn on Personal Schedule Only so they can only see events they're included in.

arlo

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Re: Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?
« Reply #11 on: April 04, 2019, 04:20:24 AM »
An improvement would be though if the export functions on the different pages (Songs, Documents etc.) would have an equivalent import-function as well. So for example exporting songs from one project and importing these to the song-section of another project would be great.

For the sake of anyone else reading this, you can assign a song to multiple projects, so the import/export workflow described here usually isn't needed.

Chris

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Re: Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?
« Reply #12 on: April 04, 2019, 05:17:34 AM »
Apologies if my post might have been misleading to inexperienced users...
I have removed it and will post it under separate cover as I am currently gathering several improvement ideas.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2019, 05:28:56 AM by Chris »

LesStrangers

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Re: Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?
« Reply #13 on: August 05, 2019, 02:43:33 PM »
Bandhelper is exceptional. There are still a few key areas which would make it invaluable, totally promise fulfilling, and much more efficient to use.

1. Let the financials be inputted per event, and recorded there. Let that feed the Financial section automatically as one financial log entry per each event. I have given up on using the financial section and have created an excel sheet for that, because it just ended up not balancing and it's not linked to specific events, so it was still double work either way. I hate to report that the financial section is confusing. I know I'm not alone. Money should be handled/entered on the specific event page. Simpler, and more clear. It's how musicians think.

2. It would really help if a 'digest' summary of gigs yet to be responded to, accepted or declined, could be emailed or texted in one email or text to a specific band member. Bandmembers get confused by multiple reminders, frustrated that they can't get a quick view list of everything they've committed to or failed to respond to. It's an issue, and needs a simple solution. If it has to be in email form and not SMS, that's understandable, then just email will do. And I think the Admin should be CC'd a copy of that digest for that particular member receives. This is an issue for bands with as many members as we have – especially when I have second chair violinist for example, and the 1st chair doesn't reply, so I have to get the 1st chair on several gigs, so that I don't lose out on schedule the replacement.

3. It would be nice if you could have visually broken out categories of users. For instance - String Section, Horn Section, Guitars, Rhythm Section. [And possibly a separate column for role other than the instrument, say for band leader, scheduling, arrangements, etc.} The older we get the more quickly visual all of these screens need to efficiently manage complex bands.  (ALTHOUGH - this is a low priority for most bands, and I'm not frustrated by it.)

Re-iterating, Bandhelper is amazing. It fulfills a a ton of promises that I am BH Pro 20 members on an annual basis. And we could not possibly ask for a more responsive and thorough developer than you, Arlo.
« Last Edit: August 06, 2019, 09:43:42 AM by LesStrangers »

arlo

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Re: Does BandHelper fulfill its promise?
« Reply #14 on: August 22, 2019, 03:16:41 PM »
1) Basing transactions on events would be too limiting. Currently you can have transactions that aren't related to an event, like paying for a website hosting fee. You can also have transactions that cover multiple events, like making a single distribution for two gigs on the same day or multiple gigs on the same weekend. Using the Defaults button when entering a new transaction saves time by automatically filling in the name, date and users from the most recent event, but that still keeps them separate enough to be fully flexible.

2) Sending notifications in digest form is on my wish list. You can see your list of events at any time by looking at the Schedule > Events page in the app or website. Unconfirmed events are in italics and events that are awaiting your response have an alert icon next to them.

3) How is this different from what's already available with the Role field?

Thanks for your kind words on the overall effectiveness of the product. :-)