Do you want to find out how to make a radio program? Do you want to broadcast via a radio station or the Internet? You might find the information in The HowToMakeRadio Guide to be helpful.
Computers can try to translate this information to another language.
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How would you like to send your show to your listeners?
There are two basic ways to blend the sounds with the carrier wave:
If you choose this method, the listener must finish getting a copy of the entire file (representing perhaps your entire show or an entire segment of your show) - even if the listener just wants to hear the first few seconds of your show. This download process might take a long time. After the listener has finished downloading the big file, the listener can start listening to your show (or show-segment) stored in the file.
If you choose this method, the listener might be able to start listening to your show soon after the download starts. The listener can start hearing your show before the entire file has finished downloading. If your listener's computer system or the server is slow or becomes too busy, or if the Internet becomes very busy, the listener might hear unintended pauses in the show's sound.
You might want to explore access via community, public, or non-commercial radio stations. If Internet access is readily available in your area, you might at least consider the "Entire-file download" approach, if not the "Streaming audio" approach.
In many parts of the world, radio receivers are relatively inexpensive, while Internet access might be prohibitively expensive for many or most potential listeners. In regions where Internet access is more affordable, many people might access the Internet via telephone lines or television cable. The (fewer) people who access the Internet via "wireless" portable devices might tend not to download big files (such as audio from a radio show). Why? The least costly (and perhaps most abundant) "wireless" Internet connections might be slow, so the downloading of a big file might take a long time.
In general, an FM radio signal used in radio broadcasting is a "line-of-sight" signal. People who are far away from the FM radio transmitter might not receive the FM signal. AM signals used in radio broadcasting might "skip" or "bounce" between the ground and higher parts of the Earth's atmosphere. People who are relatively far away from the AM radio transmitter might receive the AM signals faintly. In some regions served by television cable services, the television cable service might also provide access to nearby radio stations. A listener with appropriate Internet access and (for example, computer) hardware and software can receive Internet radio, regardless of the listener's location on the Earth. The strength of the Internet radio signal does not become very faint with increasing distance.
Radio transmission stations might be able to offer relatively small amounts of time for studio access and broadcast access. Those that offer more time might charge substantial fees for that time. If a listener misses that time, the listener might not hear that show, if the show is not rerun. Using a relatively inexpensive personal computer system, one can edit and produce an entire radio program. Some businesses or organizations (Web site hosting services) might provide space for storage of World Wide Web sites with audio for free or relatively inexpensively. A listener can generally access a show's audio file via the Internet at any time of the day or night throughout the week.
You may want to identify your goal. You might create an action plan to address that goal. As you work on the action plan, you might find you need more training or utensils. You might consider a career involving radio.
You might want to identify the gaps between what exists now and what is preferred - for example, in the media that exists for a specific community or audience-segment. Then you might write a goal definition. You might use that goal definition to generate objectives or problem definitions. Then you use the problem definitions to generate ideas. With an awareness of criteria that affect your solution, you convert the ideas into an action plan. Your action plan might tightly integrate several components. You might design your program content in a way that allows that content to be used in radio transmission and on the Internet - and elsewhere. You might make sure that your radio transmission programs refer listeners to your Internet address (or URL) for more information. Conversely, you might make sure that your World Wide Web site gives information about your radio transmission program.
You think about your radio program. You translate its features into benefits, and identify the key benefit. You identify the target audience or target market, its demographics, and its psychographics. You identify what benefits that target audience wants from your radio program. You research your competitors - in radio, on the Internet, and elsewhere. You compare the key benefit that they offer and the one that your radio program offers. You write your positioning statement. With the positioning statement in mind, you might improve the radio program. You might also design advertising, publicity, and public relations approaches that are consistent with that positioning statement.
Your goal, action plan, and marketing plan might help you to identify the software you might need.
For example, if one were developing a Chinese-language radio program for a specific context, one might consider specific software packages.
EnZip or JustZIPit allows a person to use the ".zip" format to compress and to uncompress files.
Audacity is audio production and audio editing software. You might prefer to download the most recent stable release (or version); you might prefer to avoid the "Beta" or "Release Candidate" or other test versions. If you prefer not to pay licensing fees for use of the ".mp3" (lossy compression) format, you might use Audacity to save your Internet audio work in the ".ogg" (lossy compression) format.
OpenOffice.org is a suite of software. It includes word processing, spreadsheet, presentation, and other software. You might prefer to download the most recent stable release (or version); you might prefer to avoid the "Beta" or "Release Candidate" or other test versions. OpenOffice.org can read and write files from other software, such as Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, and Microsoft PowerPoint. OpenOffice.org uses XML (or eXtensible Markup Language) to save its files internally. Your use of XML might mean that people in the future might face fewer troubles, if the people need to access your XML documents. This XML use by OpenOffice.org might then help you to archive your radio-related documents.
NJSTAR Chinese Word Processor software allows a person to type Chinese characters. You might want to save your NJSTAR Chinese Word Processor documents as ".rtf" (or Rich Text Format) documents. Then you can use OpenOffice.org to work with those ".rtf" documents. For example, you might use OpenOffice.org to save your Chinese-language scripts as Web pages.
Making and broadcasting (or distributing) an effective radio program involve various knowledges and skills. You might want to apply your creativity effectively - not only when you make the content of the program. You might want to be able to learn how to learn what you need in order to solve whatever problem arises in your work. You might want to know how to search for helpful information.
Many aspects of the law affect radio production. One aspect is the use of intellectual property.
If you plan to use writing, music, software, or other intellectual property, especially in your radio production work, be aware of the licensing or other requirements you might face.
Were you thinking of distributing your show in ".mp3" format over the Internet? If "yes", do you know how much you must pay in licensing fees for your use of the ".mp3" format? If you prefer not to pay licensing fees for your lossy compression encoding format, perhaps you might prefer to use the ".ogg" format instead. Vorbis.com provides more information. Audacity can save audio in the ".ogg" format.
Appropriate networking and volunteering might be of interest to some.
Preproduction is a phase where you might do the preparation for a show or show-segment. If you invest some effort in preproduction, you might reduce money and time spent in production and postproduction dramatically. Some of the "Training and Development" resources might be helpful in this regard. Also of interest might be software, including OpenOffice.org.
Make sure you have a current library card for your local library system. If convenient, apply for a library card in nearby library systems also; in some regions, if you have a library card for one library system, you can get a free library card for library systems in nearby municipalities. The library card may give you access not only to the physical collections in the library buildings. The number on the library card might be your account number allowing you free access to special restricted-access databases (including, for example, full-text articles from newspapers and journals).
In the production phase, you might actually record sound intended for use in the show or show-segment. Some of the "Training and Development" resources might be helpful in this regard.
In the postproduction phase, you might select audio of interest, mix audio, edit audio, and otherwise process audio into the broadcast-ready or distribution-ready result. Some of the "Training and Development" resources might be helpful in this regard. Also of interest might be software, including Audacity.
When the show is ready for broadcast and distribution, one may use the appropriate approaches for the broadcast and distribution. Additional information might be in the section titled: "Decide: radio transmission station, Internet radio station, or both".
Future generations might view the radio work that you do today as an important glimpse into the past. Accordingly, plan to archive your audio work and related materials, including computer files, appropriately. In general, even for "background interviews", try to record sound with broadcastable quality.
Suggestions? Questions? Having trouble with a link here?
Feel free to e-mail the Equinet Broadcasting Network at email@example.com.
This page was updated on January 22, 2005.
Copyright © 1998-2005 by Barry G. Wong. All rights reserved.