Program Elements are a sub division of a Program. To start working with the individual program elements for any particular program, highlight the program from the Grid Editor, Programs tab, then select the Program Elements tab.
Create a new Program Element
Creating Program Elements is the most important aspect of automation and audio programming. Special care and attention to details is required to ensure a pleasant playback (execution) experience.
Note: Please refer to the Graphical Program Element Editor for an alternative and graphical method of creating program elements. This is the program elements' multi track editor.
We will start by explaining the program element editing interface.
On the left hand side you have the media browser displayed in a tree control with the list of matching media in a grid.
This makes it possible to drag and drop media records from the media browser onto the list of program elements.
Dragging and dropping media records on the program elements list will create a new program element record for each dropped media record.
Alternatively, you can create a program element record and add it to the list of program elements by clicking on New, modifying the values on the right most part of the screen, then saving your values. This approach has the advantage of controlling the mix settings and volume envelope of the program element. You could also change the type of program element to any of the following available options: Song, Jingle, Commercial, Line-in, Time announcement and other (not automated).
You could also right click on the list of program elements to call the graphical editor which allows you to add media records to the program elements list graphically and modify their mix and volume envelope settings.
To create a new program element manually (not visually or drag and drop), you click on the New button and use the form to enter the properties of the element you are working on adding.
The program element can be any of the following different types:
Let's select Song for our example and then click on the link button to select a song from our database.
This bring up the program element properties dialog box.
Click on the link button on the Program Element Properties dialog box to bring up the media search form for us to be able to search for a media file from our media database.
Enter whatever criteria you wish to search based on and click on the Search button.
Clicking on the Search button will retrieve the matching audio files. Select one of the result records and click on the OK button. Alternatively you may want to double click on the selected record.
The Program Element Properties dialog box will be populated with the selected media record properties. Notice that the End Time is adjusted to match the audio file's length or duration on record.
The check box next to the End Time is disable which forces the system to use the selected media's duration. Checking it allows you to cut the song playback short of the end of the audio length. You would normally want to use it with the last element of the program if it's length is beyond the boundaries of the program. This way, you make sure all your programs are started on time as scheduled.
Click OK to confirm.
Click on the Save button to save our newly created program element.
Program elements are allowed to overlap. The automation engine will play songs in sequence based on their start time.
If items overlap and the "play on time" setting is checked, the automation engine will stop the preceding program element media playback and play the one with the "play on time" setting checked, as soon as the computer clock hits the start time of the program element.
Copyright © 2011, Emile Bassil
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