[App] Integrating Weather Cameras

Any thoughts on integrating cameras to mount to the posts our stations are on? For example if someone has their station mounted on a mast on their roof, we could include a “webcam” looking at the sky and current weather conditions in addition to the weather readings. Could be a cool little addition later on?

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Run one of those famous label pieces of software that let you go appropriately wild customizing things. I have a webcam on my weewx page, to do the obligatory weewx mention.

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Would you mind sharing a link?

Confused - a link for what exactly ?

A link to your weewx page?

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Any thoughts on integrating cameras to mount to the posts our stations are on?

It’s an expensive solution, but I use a NEST outdoor IQ on the end of the roof peak looking up at about 50 degrees. It gives me a good view of the southern sky that matches the sun path winter to summer so I can also better understand the operation of the solar array. Another regular NEST outdoor (before the IQ came out with better night sensitivity, same sensor type as the NEST “hello”) is on a flag pole tower looking to the north and at the solar array (helps to know when is a good time to clear the snow and ice). The front doorbell cam shows how the sunrise moves from well to the north (near that red siding, all the way to over the far right home from winter to summer. Also, the motion across the sky from 20 degrees noon winter to 70 degrees noon summer is interesting to watch, the angle of morning sun travel is dramatic on the doorbell cam (on the iPad, time scrolls, and it can make time lapse video clips too).

Both of those still give limited sky coverage, so come spring I am going to mount a NEST hello (better wide field square view), got it at good discount as a home depot buy of the day, on its back looking straight up where an old metal chimney is now capped. That one should be good for cloud type and cloud cover.

It’s an expensive solution, not suitable for places like WU web cams. You can share the URL, but far from the typical public view, no other direct access as far as I know. Also, a complete waste of NEST features like motion detection, facial recognition, door bell, etc. But, they are well sealed solid built units which seem robust through harsh weather.

Especially the older NEST outdoor cams can be found from time to time at very deep discounts, you can keep a lookout for sales at sites like slickdeals (no affiliation). All of the models go on pretty good sales from time to time, occasionally there are very deep discounts. Supposedly NEST is moving to an unlimited plan for all cameras at a home.

Here is a sample, you can see the wider “square” view of the hello doorbell cam:

Hi @PaulStofer,

I have gone the raspberry pi camera module route for several reasons and found it to be a successful direction to take. Because it allows me to create time lapse, video, and stills all from the same camera and raspberry pi. It integrates to weewx and other weather presentation software quite simply. Searching you can find all the advice online. Here is an example created by some one else that describes just one way to do it, and my setup is very similar but also quite different. Having all the control using the raspberry pi ends up better for me than trying to use a chinese manufactured webcam or weather cam, but people in these forums have discussed other options if you search.

cheers Ian :slight_smile:

I just run ‘motion’ to take periodic snapshots and a cron job to upload the image to my weewx system (which builds the web page). The camera is a Logitech USB camera taped (ugh) to the inside of a window.

Be careful with network-enabled cameras, which basically all phone home to China (or Texas). A directly attached camera is preferred for sure unless you know how to lock your network down appropriately. Most of these cameras have no ‘do not phone home’ setting. Ugh.

Regardless - it’s not WF specific, this one might be a question that you’d want to ask on wxforum.net

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https://www.skahan.net/weewx/ - note this is restricted to just ip addresses from US and AU, as anything on internet just gets hammered by the usual countries who Advanced Persistent Threat maps to. It gets so old. A little nginx and fail2ban magic helped a lot, FWIW.

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I ended up using a cheap chinese 360 camera that even gives nice cloud images at night Web Cam Suggestion?

Be careful with network-enabled cameras, which basically all phone home to China (or Texas). A directly attached camera is preferred for sure unless you know how to lock your network down appropriately. Most of these cameras have no ‘do not phone home’ setting. Ugh.

Definitely a concern. Again an expensive option, I use two different internet providers. All of my IoT stuff goes on one (the Russians, Chinese, Texas, etc. are welcome to enjoy watching my weather), and the other for the computer.

Another option would be to open up the API to alternate sensors. I work with a small Nordic Ski area (waiting desperately for the cellular hub) and would like to be able to add in sensors for snow depth and so on.

We currently use a cellular trail camera to show a trail conditions sample. This works fairly well, but the manufacturer has no API and stores images on a website. We have to scrape the site to copy images to our site. This process changes with each site update. I would really love a method to inject image and other data into the WF stream.