Project: Radio DJ Automation
If I earned a nickel for everything I’ve ever created that no one else cares about I’d probably be about to earn another nickel with this next post.
Anyway, one of my many pet projects has been setting up a private internet radio stream. I actually toyed with the idea for a bit of building a small FM transmitter and going full on Pirate Radio but I decided that the current state of media doesn’t necessitate the need for radio waves when the internet is right there just waiting with a much broader reach. The real issue is that it mostly just reaches me.
The nice part is, I don’t really mind.
I plan to put up a little page for Lameazoid Radio, but I’m still fleshing out the details. A few people know the URL of the stream (hint: stream DOT) but I have no idea if they remember it and I doubt anyone listens. I suppose the question is, why would anyone want to listen? Can’t you get the same thing from your iPod?
This question includes myself. Wouldn’t it be more beneficial to just load up the iPod and let it rip? I do have some answer to this. For example, my iPod isn’t large enough to hold my entire music library if I want it to. It also is incredibly poor at shuffling music in a meaningful manner. The Radio Automation software I’m using lets me sort things into nice themed play rotations. i can interject little funny clips in at intervals as well to help break up the flow.
I also run a lot of Podcasts. The problem with using the iPod for Podcasts is that when it’s in my iTunes library, waiting to be played, I feel obligated to listen. If it’s out of my control and playing on it’s own I can forgive and forget the playout if I miss one or come in partway through and leave early. It’s expected I guess with radio that I may miss something. It’s basically a subtle psychological point that works behind the scenes.
Anyway, I’ve managed to work the kinks out of the automated updates on Podcasts which leaves a few other projects that I want to implement on the table.
First, I need to record some promos. I want to make a few music based tags and a few others promoting the shows on the stream. This basically requires time and a microphone.
Second I need to finish fleshing out the lineup. I want to run new shows 7 days a week at 4 and 7. I’ve got both slots about half filled now. I also would like to find another short bit repeating news segment to compliment Tech 5 which plays every hour where there isn’t a show right now.
I also need to come up with something for the over night. It’s likely no one will ever listen in the overnight so just running music all night is the easiest bet but I do like the idea of having some sort of “programming” there. I’m thinking of pushing some audiobooks or something for lengthy periods but missing part of an audiobook is worse than missing part of a podcast. I’m also thinking of compiling together my longform Techno mixes and running those. Also possible some concerts in order. Basically I’m looking to run longer blocks of related content in the overnight.
Thirdly i want to add Live Reporting. I’ve set up Skype on this PC with auto answer for known callers. This means i can call in and it’ll pick up. Right now doing this kills the stream audio and it doesn’t return. I have some software (freeware) that I believe I can use to create a gate that will shut off the stream when a call comes in and then resume it afterwards. This would mean if I wanted to do “live reporting (to no one) I could call in through Skype on my phone. Or better yet, if say, the GNR crew wanted to broadcast live they would simply call into the Skype and it would play. On top of this I want to set up Skype to auto record and possibly auto rotate these short news bits.
Finally, at least on the list now, is to set up an automatic “now playing” Tweet. I’m not sure the best way to accomplish this yet though the software does support a now playing.txt that is used by Icecast to set the title. What wil be more likely is I’ll set up timed tweets for the time each show starts, like on @lameazoid.