TUAW supplemental: Circles for iPhone


Earlier this week, I reviewed Circles for iPhone, a snazzy new memory game from Snowman 1. It’s fun and very challenging. I tend to do well at it, and it’s because of my training in music. Here’s how I’ve been winning at Circles.

Pardon me while I go all “music theory.” One of the main conventions of music is the time signature. It determines how many beats are in a measure of music, and which note value gets one beat. In 4/4 time, or “common time,” one measure gets four beats, and a quarter note is worth one beat. Here’s an example of 4/4 time:

You can see how the video counts beats one, two, three and four. After four, the next measure begins on beat number one. That’s what I do when I play Circles.

The first four tones are the first “measure.” Once I’ve learned the first measure, I’ve got it. Then I learn the second measure one “note” at a time. Eventually I “play back” the first and second measure. Then the first, second, and third, and so on. Since each section of Circles features 15 levels, you only need to memorize about four measures of “music.” You can do that, right?

  1. “Snowman” in this context always makes me think of Oryx and Crake.