Airtime 2.1 for Broadcasters

Now playing

The Now Playing page provides a view of the files your station will play out, or has already played out, which defaults to showing the 24 hours ahead. If you've only just installed Airtime, there might not be any files shown yet. Click the calendar and clock icons above the table to change the date and time range, then click the magnifying glass icon to the right.

On the left side of the page, the Start and End times, Duration and Title of each file are shown. On the right, Creator, Album, and Cue or Fade times can also be shown. Click the Show/hide columns button on the right to configure the metadata displayed, by checking the boxes in the pop-up window.

The row for the currently playing file is displayed with a bright green background. Any underbooked shows (shows with insufficient content to fill the time allowed) are displayed with a row indicating the length of the underbooking in minutes and seconds. These rows contain a red exclamation mark and have a pink background.

If a show is overbooked, which means the total playout length is longer than the time allowed for the show, a brown row indicates that the file will be faded out when the show ends. A red row indicates that the file will not be played at all. The length of the overbooking is shown in minutes and seconds in the last row of the show.

To remove the extra files from the end of an overbooked show, click the Scissors button at the top left of the table. Alternatively, check the boxes for files which have not yet played out, and click the Trashcan button, to the right of the Scissors, to remove them from the schedule.

If you have a long schedule displayed, and you wish to skip to the currently playing item, click the button with the Down arrow icon, to the right of the Trashcan. To cancel the current show, click the Eject button, which is to the right again. A pop-up window will ask you to confirm the cancellation.

Files which are no longer available have an exclamation mark icon in the second column. This may happen for files which were part of previous shows, and were removed from Airtime's main storage or watched folders subsequently. Files which are included in forthcoming shows cannot be removed from the library through the Airtime administration interface.

Changing the schedule

The Now Playing page enables you to make last-minute changes to running shows. In the top left corner of the page is an arrow icon which enables you to open Airtime's library of files and playlists.

In the library table which opens, use the drop-down menu at the top to choose from Files, Playlists, or All items. By default 10 items are listed, but you can click the Show drop-down menu to change the list length to between 5 and 100 items. The search field on the top left (with a magnifying glass icon) can be used to refine your selection. Like an Internet search engine, you do not have to type in the correct upper or lower case, press the Enter key, or even type the whole of the search term before matches from the Airtime library are displayed.

This search field enables the selection of items based on any tag metadata stored in the Airtime database, whether that metadata is displayed in the table or not. (Click the Show/hide columns button in this table to determine which metadata is displayed).

For example, if all of your jingles are tagged with the Genre of Jingle, you can very easily find your jingles, regardless of their Title, Creator or Album, by searching for jingle. The same technique can be used to find advertising and promo files. (See the chapter Using the airtime-import script for tips on batch tagging files with metadata).

Multiple words in a search term are matched using 'and' rather than 'or' logic, to narrow your search. Perhaps you have tagged some jazz-flavoured station idents intended for use in a particular show called 'Jazz Maverick' with the Album tag of Jazz Maverick and a Genre of Ident. You could then find exactly the idents you are searching for by typing maverick ident into the search field.

Clicking on a file or playlist in the library table opens a pop-up menu which enables you to audition the item, or remove it from the Airtime library. You can also download a file to your local computer using this menu, or edit its metadata.

After you have found the items that you want, you can then drag and drop them from the library table on the left side of the interface into the running show schedule on the right side.

You can also select multiple items using the Select button, just beneath the search field, which has a square icon. Alternatively, use the checkboxes on the left side of the library table, then click the Add button, which has a plus icon. If you wish, you can also use the Delete button to permanently remove items from Airtime's storage server or watched folders. Only admin users have permission to delete all items.

To insert the items at a specific time in the show schedule, click one of the grey and white triangle icons on the left of the schedule table, which will change to red and white. A red horizontal line will be shown at the insertion point.

Another way to create an insertion point is to click a file in the schedule table, then click Select cursor on the small pop-up menu that will appear. This pop-up window also enables you to listen to the show in advance, or remove the file from the Airtime library. 

Multiple insertion points can be created, so that the same file is inserted into the schedule at different times. For example, you may wish to play a news report every hour, or a station ident after every five music files.

A live show that is set for recording is displayed with a red dot icon in the left column. It might not contain any files or playlists, depending on your configuration for live shows.