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Prix 1987 - 2007

Ars Electronica Linz & ORF Oberösterreich

Gottfried Haider

radio2stream transforms radio signals into an MP3 stream that can be received by several computers. People can then listen to the radio on their computers and determine the channel they want to listen to by voting.

The aim was to establish a bridge between radio stations and PCs, and so enable users to conveniently listen to the radio on their computers.

A study (ARD/ZDF Online Study 2000, p. 345) revealed that 41 percent of computer users listen to the radio while surfing. Yet it is rather complicated to do so: when you put your stereo set right next to your computer, you have to make a choice, either radio or PC (a mixer would be a bit much). The obvious solution would be for radio stations to have central web streams, but apparently this causes copyright problems. The ORF has been offering their regional radio stations and Ö1 in stream form since November 21, 2003, but FM4 or Ö3 are not available.

radio2stream is also a content source for local networks which are not connected to the Internet and are thus usually limited to data exchange and multi-player games.

I began with a small-sized motherboard by VIA and a USB radio (which is no longer being produced); I bought the other components on eBay. While I was trying to figure out what kind of case I should put the parts in, I remembered a plain metal box my father had brought me from Yemen, and it turned out to be exactly the right size. I had trouble doing the metalwork because I had never done any before - a spot of blood in the box reminds me of the fact.

Later I added a wireless LAN (802.11b) adapter and it enabled wireless access.

Thanks to: Florian for the jigsaw, Ernst Schagerl and Lorenz for the power drills, Kevin for the digital camera and a little PHP voodoo, and all those who worked on the open source projects I used.