Just Playlists 3.5.0—Album Artwork for Radio Paradise, and No External Media Required

This release doesn’t have any major new features and all changes are in both JP and JPP.  The most visible change is that, if you are a fan of the awesome streaming station called Radio Paradise, you will now see album artwork displayed when you play their 128Kbps MP3 SHOUTcast stream.  Though it might sound like I’m favoring RP with a special feature, it’s really their ingenuity that allows for the artwork.  They attach a URL pointing to the album artwork hosted on their website for the current song within the “StreamUrl” metadata tag for their 128Kbps stream.  Most SHOUTcast streams either don’t use the StreamURL tag or just have a URL for their main website.  So, though Radio Paradise is the only stream I know of that uses the tag in this fashion, any stream doing something similar will end up with the image showing up in Just Playlists as album art.  I wish many more streamers did this.

If you want to listen to Radio Paradise and see/hear for yourself, a direct link to their 128Kbps MP3 SHOUTcast stream is http://www.radioparadise.com/musiclinks/rp_128.m3u.  You can tap this URL on your Android phone and choose to open it with Just Playlists.  That’s all there is to it.  To save this as a permanent playlist on your phone, choose the “Create playlist” item from the main display menu after you’ve loaded up the stream as described above and, once there, choose “Save hosted playlist” from the menu and give the playlist a name and save it.

The main website for Radio Paradise is http://www.radioparadise.com, if you’re interested in finding out what’s playing, looking up information on the songs they’re playing, or giving them a donation—their broadcast is listener-supported.  If you access their website from your phone, you’ll be directed to a mobile website.  Choose the “Listen” link to access their stream links.  Make sure you scroll down to their MP3 links if you want to use Just Playlists to listen to the stream.

The other useful change I’ve made to JP/JPP is that you no longer need to have an SD card installed in your phone to use the program.  Since I first wrote Just Playlists, many phones have started to come with an “internal SD card”—that is, there is storage built into the phone that acts like an SD card and on which you can store music and playlists.  How this is implemented seems to differ between phones, and I’ve never worked with a phone that has such a storage space.   But if you do store music in this space, you can also create playlists there and play them via Just Playlists.

One other thing you may notice if you are running Android 2.2/Froyo on your phone.  I’m no longer hard-coding the SD card’s top-level directory in as “/sdcard.”  I’m letting Android tell the program what this directory is called.  Under 2.2, it’s called “/mnt/sdcard.”  There is still a “/sdcard” directory, but I believe it’s actually what is called a symbolic link in Unix parlance.  You can navigate to either location to access the SD card but, by default, you’ll be placed in the “/mnt/sdcard” location, since that is the mount point for the SD card file system, from what I can tell (more Unix talk there).

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