What is Time Lapse 386
It's a project I started in the beginning of 2011 where I download stills from various sources (web cams) and then compile a time lapsed movie. The entire process is automated which means I only need to take care of the server's 24x7 operation uptime. The purpose of this project is to create and maintain an archive of these web cams so everyone could look up for any day in the past what the weather was like on that day or follow the erection or destruction of various captured events.
How it works
I use geostik.com to locate web cams and then download stills using basically one minute intervals. Various web cams have different refresh rated ranging from 30 frames per minute to 6 frames per hour. ffmpeg is then used to combine downloaded stills into a movie using x264 codec. Once movie is compiled, file is automatically sent to YouTube (using dedicated YouTube email address - mobile module) and made publicly available.
Tools used: wget and ffmpeg
Project URL: http://www.youtube.com/user/timelapse386
29/11/2014 - Added back the Maribor (Trg svobode) webcam.
30/07/2014 - Some time has past. My hard drive which held some portion of the archived rendered videos before they are uploaded to YouTube has crashed. I have decided not to keep the archive of those videos anymore. The only reason I wanted to keep them is to potentially create a full 1-year-around timelapse video by combining all 365 videos. I can still get the videos by downloading them from YouTube. By the way, look at this nice picture of a web cam.
21/09/2013 - Added some new web cams: Dom Kapunar, Letališče Slovenj Gradec, Uršlja Gora and Žirje pri Sežani.
18/09/2013 - Had to move my project to another server therefore videos generated on 17.09.2013 are a bit bad. The new ffmpeg is a bit different and does not support old presets so I had to rewrite the ffmpeg execution. The ffmpeg now completes many times faster with the same comparable quality.
26/05/2013 - Bled webcam is no longer operational, hasn't been for a while so I removed it from the pool.
10/01/2013 - Celebrating 2 years of TimeLapse386!
05/04/2012 - Note to myself and to others: When searching older videos for 2011 and you get no results, try this date format DD-MM-YY (instead of DD-MM-YYYY, which is a newer format introducted a while ago...)
19/02/2012 - Portotož webcam doesn't work anymore, so I turned it off, added Laško. I might add some more webcams in the near future.
10/01/2012 - Celebrating project's first anniversary!
15/06/2011 - Well I be damned! System started crashing again day after day so I finally decided to move the entire project to another server.
25/05/2011 - It was a faulty HDD after all. I've replaced both of them in server and the server is running flawlessly since, yes!
24/05/2011 - My computer crashed so I'm missing a full day's worth of stills for at least 23/05/2011 and maybe some prior dates
27/02/2011 - After replacing faulty power supply, server's been running flawlessly since. It's now been more than a month and a half since the first upload on Jan 10.
26/01/2011 - Fixed server problems. Faulty power supply.
25/01/2011 - My little server keeps on crashing. I try to maintain the service steady as much as possible.