Skylla: Features

Unattended Record
Skylla houses a web-based Unattended Record section that allows the system to record from any source. Records can be triggered by time and/or dry-contact relay closure. Records can contain a “start delay” which allows the recording of program-length audio into multiple segments, which allows spots to be scheduled between the recorded segments of the show during broadcast.

Switchers, Streaming, Satellite
Skylla can control many varieties of audio switchers. RDS text output and internet streaming text is supported. Skylla supports serial-based Satellite receiver control.

Skylla Buttons
Skylla contains user-definable pages of buttons that are “attached” to the QWERTY keyboard keys, turning your entire keyboard into a tactile button box. In addition to the button pages, Skylla can play the buttons back in sequence from one key, allowing a user to cue up individual sound files (say news sound bites) and play them back in sequence, separate from the program log. This is a perfect solution for local news programming.

Skylla SmartTouch
With the addition of the optional SmartTouch package, Skylla can be controlled remotely via a simple touch-tone phone. Interrupt normal automation for special programming, complete with pre-defined carts stacked up and ready to go at any time. This is great for ballgames and other scheduled remotes, but it is also excellent in the event of an emergency. Use SmartTouch in a flood or tornado to keep your listeners informed. Use it also for “on the spot” reporting.

Live Operation
Operating Skylla in live mode is easy. The user just needs to specify what kind of live mode he or she wants to use.

  • Stop After – stops audio playback after each log item.
  • Stop Break – allows for continuous playback of audio for the music set or spot set, then stops.
  • Auto Sweep – simply plays the log item by item forever, ignoring all automation-oriented directions.

Automation instructions may be included in your Skylla log in the event that your operator is unexpectedly detained and can’t reach the studio in time to begin his or her air shift. In such a case, the system remains in AUTO mode and Skylla continues to follow its automation instructions.

Automation
Skylla’s satellite automation mode is feature-rich – it is not afterthought. When your station pulls programming from a satellite, you’ll still have maximum control over your broadcast. You will:

  • Always stay on the right break. Skylla knows how many breaks there are in the hour, when the approximate time is for those breaks and how long each break is. If a satellite source fails to send a break closure, Skylla automatically re-adjusts the next break to fire keeping your breaks in sync.
  • Always have properly-timed breaks. If traffic schedules 2 minutes into a 4 minute break, Skylla fills in the missing time with cuts you’ve designated as acceptable fill material.
  • Use time or temperature checks in place of liners to keep your satellite source sounding local.
  • Know in one glance your satellite stations’ status. Skylla’s top panel always shows what network or break is on the air, along with the current announcer. To the right of the top panel, you see your satellite clock, which shows local breaks that have already played as gray, and upcoming breaks in gold.
  • NPR affiliate? Skylla is fully-compliant with “Content Depot” and uses an easy and accessible web-based interface to manage your Content Depot options.

Music-On-Hard-Drive
Skylla’s Music-on-Hard-Drive automation’s power and flexibility comes from the structure of the log itself. Log instructions can come from traffic, music and Skylla’s own interface. To keep your log on track, Skylla uses three ways to update (or “jump”) to any position on the log.

  • Soft Update: Update to this log position skipping over any disposable material, but do NOT skip over mandatory material. Continue playing the current event until its end.
  • Hard Update: Update to this log position skipping over all material, including mandatory items. Continue playing the current event until its end.
  • Join: Update to this log position skipping over all material, including mandatory items. Fade currently playing item and execute the event on the log immediately following the Join command.

Voice Tracking
Using Skylla Producer’s Voice Tracker, you can voice track your Music-on-Hard-Drive programming. Skylla’s Voice Tracker can voice track both to a fully compiled log (one that contains traffic material already) or it can voice track directly to the music playlist (without the spots). This allows an announcer to voice track into the future as far out as playlists have been scheduled, without having to wait for the Traffic department to merge and upload the fully-compiled log.

FTP Download
Skylla’s automation (both Music-on-Hard-Drive and Satellite) support the ability to automatically download audio from FTP sites. Skylla uses a simple web-based interface to manage weather services such as WeatherEye ™ to automatically download weather forecasts.

The Skylla Team
Skylla is not only the hardware and software. It’s the team of seasoned professionals that return your phone calls when you have questions. It’s the company owners, Jan and John Schad, who have run a family-owned small market radio station for many years. Mostly, though, it’s all our customers who’ve known us over the years. People we’ve come to know by name who’ve made the most valuable suggestions that contribute significantly to the Skylla philosophy.