Ear-training helped me learn to analyse things without seeing them written down. It also taught me the value of symbolic annotation – I learned to read when I was young, and remember asking my teacher to teach me to read music, so I could be lazy and not have to memorise everything. This also taught me the value of recognition over recall, well before I’d ever heard of heuristics.
Though I did not study music theory until I went to university, as a child I perceived the structural underpinnings of music. Baroque music has a logical structure, but is also beautiful and can be understood by those who know nothing of theory. It is this approach I try to take with my designs – they are based on a firm structure, but the most important thing is that they are easy and enjoyable to use.