Radio Tidbits

August 13, 2004 | General | By: Mark VandeWettering

A couple of quick items regarding radio, that incredibly passé form of media that nonetheless seems to occupy a great deal of my time. Nerosoft is coming out with a $20 program called TimeTrax which records songs and programming off the$50 XM PCR Satellite Radio, and stores them as MP3 with appropriate tags and all. Leave it running over night and you could have hundreds of songs, all ready to download to your iPod. That’s very cool. Gizmodo expressed the concern that the RIAA probably has lawyers by the truckload ready to squash this, but frankly it wouldn’t be difficult to write an open source version of this: a brief google on the web revealed most of the information that you need. Basically the XM device looks like a USB serial device, and a lot of the protocol has been reverse engineered. Cool stuff.

I’m mostly interested in doing this not for songs, but rather for sports: I’d like to be able to record and timeshift baseball games. It’s not clear to me if you can get local games via XM radio, but there is the possibility of using Griffin Technology radioShark. There are two small problems with it: it’s not available yet, and as yet they only seem to have software for the Macintosh. Still, I’ll keep my eye open, since it records both AM & FM.