With only a few weeks left in 2018, I thought I would update you on the "State of the Harborcams" as we go into 2019. First off, I would like to thank all of you for helping me keep the cameras maintained and operating. While I enjoy watching the cams, I enjoy the fact that many people like yourself have a chance to look into their screen and have a bit of enjoyment watching the view of the Northland each day.
2018 - In 2018 we added Wisconsin Point Cam and replaced the GLA Cam, Hillside Cam and Harbor Cam ( I snuck that one in). We also installed a new weather station at the Marine Museum and installed a new marine scanner.
2019 - In 2019, we will be installing two cams at the Silver Bay Marina. The cameras have been purchased and programmed, however, there is some underground wiring that needs to be done first so we might have to wait until the ground thaws in the spring.
There was some discussion about doing something at the Soo Locks, however, we will not be involved. It will be nice to see what they come up with.
Canal Cam - This is a newer camera, however, it takes the brunt of bad weather. At some point, I would like to upgrade this camera to a more hardy version.
Bridge Cam - Working fine.
These two cams are located on top of the Lake Superior Marine Museum. The internet connection sometimes gets bogged down when the waves and light conditions overload that camera streams -- hopefully, the internet bandwidth can be increased soon.
Hillside, Bayfront, and Harborcam - Hillside and Harborcam are new cams with zoom and pan capabilities. Bayfront cam is now the oldest of all the cams ( 5 yrs). However, Hillside and Harborcam easily cover the Bayfront area. I will keep the Bayfront cam as a backup, but may not run it all the time. This should relieve some bandwidth congestion at the Harbor Hub. Right now 6 cams must share the internet connection and sometimes it gets bogged down.
GLA Cam - Working fine - no changes anticipated.
Pier B Cam - Working fine, no changes anticipated.
Wisconsin Point - While the location of this camera is not ideal, it is the only location on Wisconsin Point with power so there won't be any upgrades until there are more options for relocation. Actually, the camera itself takes a tremendous beating from the weather and has held up very well (knock-on-wood). This camera provides a view very few people get a chance to see and enjoy.
Two Harbors - Two Harbors continues to be a great place to view the beautiful harbor and Lake Superior.
Depot cam - While the Depot Cam gives a great perspective, I may look at moving its location in 2019 closer to the Harbor.
Boat Launch - no changes anticipated.
Silver Bay - Similar to Two Harbors, this should be a great location to watch small boat activity as well as large boat traffic into North Shore Mining.
Summary - as with any new technology, there are always compromises on internet speed, image quality, and video transmission. The good thing is that there is always tweaking and component upgrades that come along that help. So, the Good Lord willing, I plan to keep at this for 2019 - Enjoy the scenery!
p.s. Most the time I don't really know what I'm doing with all this stuff so I just kinda stumble through it.