What’s New in MetaRadio? January 2019

It’s been eight months since the first public release of MetaRadio. Since then, I’ve developed over 100 changes and bug-fixes. This month’s update is one of our biggest yet, so I wanted to highlight the changes in this blog post.

As always, you can sign up for a 30-day free trial, and then purchase it online for a very low price.

All these changes have been driven by user suggestions. If you have any ideas for how MetaRadio could better serve you, please get in touch.

If you are an existing customer, you can always download the latest version from the download page – just make sure you use the same email address you used when purchasing MetaRadio.

New Feature: HTML-only Song Finder

One of the most requested features is a way to create a Song Finder without WordPress. While WordPress is a very popular platform for radio statios, not everyone uses it.

Our new HTML-only Song Finder saves your song history as JSON files, provides a HTML template for the song finder (which you can customise), and then allows you to upload it to a FTP server.

There is no need for a database, scripting, or any custom software.

New Automation System: ZaraRadio 1.6.2

I first used ZaraRadio more than 10 years ago at my first community radio station. It turns our ZaraRadio is very popular, and still in use by a lot of stations around the world.

ZaraRadio doesn’t have any database, and also doesn’t output any ID3 tags, so this implementation was a fun little challenge. In the end, I’ve built a robust system where MetaRadio parses the ID3 of each file itself, and uses this to output the Title, Artist, and Duration.

If you have a consistent filename structure, such as ‘Title – Artist’ or ‘Artist – Title’, you can also use this.

Read about how to setup ZaraRadio with MetaRadio.

New Automation System: iAutomate Radio

I’ve also added support for a new entrant to the Radio Automation System market – iAutomate Radio. This system seems so new that their website doesn’t contain much info – but if you are one of their customers, you now have a handy way to sending Now Playing data to different systems. Hooray!

BreakawayOne: HD Cores

MetaRadio has supported BreakawayOne’s FM RDS Encoder since an early beta version, but now I have added support for HD Cores. This way, you can use the in-built streaming encoder to send metadata direct to streaming servers such as Icecast and Shoutcast.

I’ve also added support for custom formatting strings in BreakawayOne, just like most of the other RDS encoders we support.

StereoTool – Dynamic PS

Dynamic PS is popular in some markets where cars don’t widely support RadioText. I don’t personally like it, and it’s not really a part of the RDS spec, but it’s not up to me to decide how you should be using RDS. Therefore, this release adds support for Dynamic PS in StereoTool’s RDS Encoder. I’ll be adding support for more RDS encoders as time goes on (feel free to email me your request to bump it up the priority list).

Custom Text File Output

Some people are using MetaRadio to interface with legacy systems that require input in a particular format. Therefore, I’ve added support for Custom Text Files – you can use a number of our own merge tags, and put your own text in around those.

FTP Upload

FTP is still a convenient way to send data to third-party servers. Thus, I’ve added support for automatic FTP upload for the following outputs:

  • JSON File
  • Custom Text File
  • HTML Song Finder

Bug Fixes – including that Pesky Scrollbar!

One of the silliest bugs in MetaRadio was in the config app. When you open the config app on certain low-resolution screens, the rightmost section was cut off (making it hard to configure outputs). Now, I believe I’ve fixed the horizontal scrollbar for all screen resolutions. Sometimes it’s the simple things in life…

There’s also a number of other small bug fixes in MetaRadio.

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I'm Anthony Eden, and I'm a IT Professional, Broadcast Technician, Software Developer, and Solutions Engineer. I've been working in broadcast media since 2008, and developing software and websites for just as long. Right now, I provide freelance services through Media Realm - in particular, to the media and not-for-profit industries.

Follow Anthony on Twitter: @anthony_eden