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The Raspberry Pi webcam viewer

April 30, 2013

Having a spare monitor lying around the office has made me want to create a dedicated webcam viewer to keep an eye on all the cameras we have going around the world. This would be easy to do with a regular PC but I want to keep power usage and upfront costs down as well. I used to use my Chumby to do this but unfortunately they have shut down.

Another feed I’d like to have is the live view from the gorgeous Capitol Reef National Park web camera that we installed for Utah Valley University’s field station.

The requirements are simple, just the ability to load a full screen image from a URL and refresh it at regular intervals. The Raspberry pi is the obvious solution to this since it provides a full featured linux box for under $40 and barely uses any power. A bit of web searching yields this nice solution for autoloading a full screen web page (and this one as well). This will work great for loading the live URL for any webcam. The only challenge now is that since my current time zone is 8 hours off of the CRFS webcam if I want a live day time image I’ll need to have the software load the URL of the time stamped archive image rather then the current static webcam image.

So, next up, add a timer to switch between cameras and add time zone shifting so I can load the daytime images from timelapse cameras in other time zones.

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