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I purchased an iPad after years of resisting owning a tablet.  I tried a Kindle ten or so years ago but was irritated when the thing broke after only a year or so. I watched my friends start using tablets with a bit of unease, but (after observing their heresy for a few years) I decided to throw off my Luddite shackles.

There's so much amazing material on IMSLP. Composers and publishers are more and more often offering electronic scores.  And a paper music library is heavy, easily damaged, and difficult to take on the road.

Anyway... the iPad is a thing of beauty.  Very sci-fi.  I bought a case to protect it, but also K&M makes a music stand for tablets, so I got one of those too.  I also purchased a bluetooth pencil from Apple and a foot pedal for turning pages by a company called Donner.

I'm using ForScore to read and edit parts.  It's fun cleaning up old scans, a bit labor intensive compared to a real pencil and paper, but the end result is very tidy and very legible.

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I can see the value of having music on a device; especially if orchestral/ensemble music could all just be on a device at concerts...

But...

Technology changes, and then it seems the material becomes irretrievable.

I have material on floppy drives that is essentially lost to me forever. Wish I had printed it out.

Technology breaks. Or the batteries die. What if the power goes out for days? No power, no music? :rolleyes:

I am a paper 'flipper'. I like to be able to flip from page to page, draw arrows, make notes in the margins, etc. this is impossible on a device. And this isn't just a habit - it's tied in to the way I think and process information.

I was hoping the larger "e-paper' format would have taken off. It looked much more useful, but it hasn't. Is e-paper like the Beta max? Superior to the VHS but poorer marketing? 

As a consumer it's best to go with the most popular format even if it sucks.

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Rue, you can buy a USB floppy drive for £25 or so that might be able to read your disks and transfer them onto your computer.

I looked up ForScore - looks lovely, but will the company still be supporting it in 10 years time? 20 years? Certainly your iPad won't still be working in 20 years, because Apple have a policy to continually upgrade their devices and systems.

I think systems like this have very specific uses where they are unbeatable (going on tour with a huge library of scores, for example). But they don't replace paper libraries at all. The tricky bit is working out how to combine the two worlds

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A USB floppy drive is only the start of a long journey for file recovery.  If the files are in proprietorial  format  of some obsolete music program (before the days of musicxml) that only ran in win95 like MusicTime it requires a time machine. Still is possible but it is a journey.

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