1. Can I send a pattern I created to someone else?

If you have v3.0 of Tala Keeper, you can. Tap the icon and select the mode of sharing your pattern. Your pattern is represented as a link whose URL is of the form tala://.... When the recipient taps that link when on an iPhone or iPod touch that has Tala Keeper installed, the app will launch and play the pattern automatically.

If your iOS version is pre-6.0, then tapping will copy the tala:// URL to the pasteboard. For iOS v6.0 and above, multiple sharing options are presented.

2. What if they don't have Tala Keeper?

If you want to share your pattern with someone who does not have Tala Keeper, you can still send them the email generated by Tala Keeper. The recipient can visit this HTML5 Tala Player page and paste the received URL into the window to play it. (Chrome and Safari are the only browsers supported at the moment.)

For example, click here to play the Adi Tala in your browser..

3. I've saved many patterns in my Tala Keeper database. How do I export them all?

If you have v3.0 of Tala Keeper and you're viewing this page on your iOS Safari, export your database as an email (yes, just tap that link). The email will not be sent immediately and will wait for your edits.

4. About the shapes of the "pads".

The imagery for the primary and secondary pads are abstract versions of the left and right faces of the Mrdangam, a major percussion instrument used in performances of Carnatic music.

5. Nothing happens when I tap the centre pad.

You use the three pads to program the metronome pattern. The centre pad is used to introduce "pulses" (or rests) between beats and you cannot begin a pattern with pulses. In the middle of a pattern, however, the pulse pad will respond by introducing a pulse into the pattern each time you tap it.

6. I programmed a very long pattern. Sometimes I just want to restart from the beginning.

Easy. Just do a two-finger tap in the ball's bounce area and the pattern will immediately reset to the beginning. You can also do this when the metronome is paused.

7. Why aren't all the Carnatic talas in the database?

It is easy to program tala patterns using Tala Keeper - just tap out the pattern on the pads. You're likely be able to program a tala just as quickly as you can recite its name, go to the search interface, type it (dealing with multiple ways to spell it) and pick it from the list. With Tala Keeper's direct interface, you don't have to deal with ambiguous names too. For example, which "Rupaka" tala should the database entry be - "Tisra Eka" (3 count) or the Alankara Rupaka talam (6 count)?

There is one use for preloading the database with patterns - you can explore the list for patterns you didn't know about. If this is important to you, holler and I'll figure something out. However, this might be more applicable to the Usuls of Turkish Makam music than to the Talas of Carnatic music. Found a strange Tiruppugazh talam? Just program it once and give it a name. Thereafter it's at your finger tips.

If you want to play the standard Talas, they are available in the online Tala Player.

8. I'm afraid I might overwrite an existing pattern in the search interface.

The first item in the search result is an action that usually reads Store as "Blah", where blah is the search term you typed. If you tapped the Store as item, the current pattern will be saved as "Blah". However, if a pattern has already been saved as "Blah", the first item will read Replace "Blah" instead. This is so you know when you'll be overwriting an already saved pattern.

© 2013 and Tala Keeper™ Srikumar Subramanian