A Time-Lapse Construction Video

Shortly after I moved into my flat in Singapore about a year ago, I found out that right in my “back yard” a 70-story skyscraper (Altez) was breaking ground. I guess most people would be a little put out that their view is getting blocked, but actually I was quite excited (although, it was also interesting to watch the formerly visible shipyard load ships). I find construction sites to be fascinating and educational. However, I don’t have the time to just stare out my window all day, so with a little help from xobs I modded a chumby One and added a USB camera to it, and created a script that snaps a 1280×1024 jpeg of the scene once every 15 minutes. All that data is collated on a NAS and finally encoded into a viewable video using mencoder.

The construction has finally progressed to a point where “interesting” things are in sight, and I’m sharing the video in case you are also fascinated by construction sites. I’ve learned a few things, such as what those dimples are for on the internal pillars of tall buildings (they hold the scaffold in place as the building goes up), and that red thing at the top of the building is for pumping concrete flooring. Also, toward the end of the video you get an idea of how much the crane’s mast flexes during normal operation.

11 Responses to “A Time-Lapse Construction Video”

  1. Owl says:

    Wow, great video (and cool Chumby-modding).
    Thanks for sharing!

  2. greggawatt says:

    Post the code and a full howto!

  3. cavokz says:

    I need a couple of those modified chumbys, I have a very nice view from the ODE in Amserdam as well as of a couple of other buildings still being grown. Is it able to stream any RSPT?

  4. anonymouse says:

    Neat. I notice that there’s people working on that thing 24 hours a day, which I imagine gets it build 2 or 3 times faster than just having a single shift of workers.

  5. [...] When [Bunny] moved into his apartment in Singapore he was surprised to find that a huge building project was just getting started on the other side of the block. Being the curious sort, he was always interested in what was going on, but just looking in on the project occasionally wasn’t enough. Instead, he set up a camera and made a time-lapse video. [...]

  6. [...] When [Bunny] moved into his apartment in Singapore he was surprised to find that a huge building project was just getting started on the other side of the block. Being the curious sort, he was always interested in what was going on, but just looking in on the project occasionally wasn’t enough. Instead, he set up a camera and made a time-lapse video. [...]

  7. robomotic says:

    Hello,
    what usb camera did you use. I have a chumby as well and would like to try out your setup.
    Cheers.

  8. logitech g11 says:

    It is evident that you love doing what you do as your enthusiasm will be seen in all of your work. Don’t ever let the passion pass on as we are here at all times anticipating what you could have in store for us. Thanks in your willingness to share your beautiful masterpieces. extremely impressed your writing abilities and also with the format in your blog. Is this a paid theme or did you customise it yourself? Either means keep up the nice high quality writing, it’s rare to see a pleasant blog like this one these days.Thanks for sharing online.

  9. Peggy says:

    Excellent adaptation on the Chumby One! Collaboration is a beautiful thing. I enjoyed the construction zones when we were in Singapore this past summer. Big-city construction projects and their limitations/solutions are fascinating. Hola to xobs!

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  11. Thnkx so much for this! I have not been this thrilled by a blog for a long period of time! You’ve got it, whatever that means in blogging.