After my last little experiment creating the stop motion weather watch I wanted to put one together to cover the whole of "Snowpocalypse 2008" as the White Christmas here in Seattle has been tagged.

I used the same tools as before... the webcam had been happily snapping away once a minute and storing the images on the Windows Home Server so I had the source material, but the biggest challenge was to get the 15,000 images displayed quickly enough to be interesting but not so jerky as to be un-watchable. I won't say 8 years working with some very smart TV production teams has actually rubbed off but after some fiddling around the idea of 10 days in 100 seconds seemed to work, so here for your pleasure:

To generate this I took images 5 minutes apart and created an uncompressed 30FPS AVI. The resulting AVI was almost 4GB which obviously isn't practical for streaming on the web (and bigger than the 105MB per file limit for free accounts on Live Streaming!) so I turned to another tool - Windows Media Encoder - to convert the file to a WMV at DVD quality which took me down to 25MB (quite a difference, but remember the AVI was uncompressed and the WMV was a two pass, variable bit-rate encode so heavily optimized).

As it turned out I ended up 4 seconds short of the full 100, but please permit me some artistic license (I should had added a credit roll!)

All this messing about looking at the weather has got me wondering more about what patterns are really like here in the Pacific Northwest so as well as becoming a regular reader of Cliff Mass' musings on the weather Rhiannon and I have ordered our own weatherstation to put in the garden (and started sharing images at Weather Underground as well as the Webcam page here in advance of the hardware arriving!)