Top 10 Twitter Accounts by Most Followers (as of Sept23/12)

Top 10 Twitter Accounts by Most Followers (as of Sept23/12)

I was preparing for updated social media presentations ( and updated my video last year of top 10 Twitter accounts with the most followers. This is a video created for my presentation. Enjoy!

The top 10 as of September 23, 2012 were:

  1. Lady Gaga (@ladygaga)
    29.7 Million
  2. Justin Bieber (@justinbieber)
    28.2 Million
  3. Katy Perry (@katyperry)
    26.8 Million
  4. Rihanna (@rihanna)
    26.0 Million
  5. Britney Spears (@britneyspears)
    20.5 Million
  6. Barack Obama (@BarackObama)
    20.0 Million
  7. Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13)
    18.8 Million
  8. akira (@shakira)
    18.2 Million
  9. YouTube (@YouTube)
    17.0 Million
  10. Kim Kardashian (@KimKardashian)
    16.2 million


Top 7 YouTube Videos by Most Views (as of Sept23/12)

Top 7 YouTube Videos by Most Views (as of Sept23/12)

I was preparing for updated social media presentations ( and updated my video of top 7 YouTube videos by most views. This is a video created for my presentation. Enjoy!

The top 7 as of September 23, 2012 were:

  1. Justin Bieber
    Baby ft. Ludacris
    781 Million
  2. Jennifer Lopez
    On The Floor ft. Pitbull
    599 Million
  3. Eminem
    Love The Way You Lie ft. Rihanna
    497 Million
  4. Shakira
    Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)
    493 Million
  5. Lady Gaga
    Bad Romance
    487 Million
  6. LMFAO
    Party Rock Anthem ft. Lauren Bennett, GoonRock
    484 Million
  7. Charlie bit my finger – again !
    478 Million


Top 6 YouTube Videos by Most Views (as of Sept20/11)

Top 6 YouTube Videos by Most Views  (as of Sept20/11)

I was preparing for a social media presentation ( and put together a quick one minute video with the current top YouTube videos by most views. I wanted to go top 5 but it seems that Charlie slipped down to 6th position. Not too long ago Charlie used to be the top video but has since been surpassed by music videos which make up the bulk of the current top videos now. I uploaded this little series of clips to share.

The top 6 as of Sept20/11 were:

  • Justin Bieber
    625 Million
  • Lady Gaga
    414 Million
  • Shakira
    396 Million
  • Eminem
    383 Million
  • Jennifer Lopez
    383 Million
  • Charlie Bit My Finger
    374 Million

It will be interesting to see over time how many views this video of mine gets as well. Sort of a little experiment in itself. 🙂


#BirdCam: Social Media Experiment Part 2

#BirdCam: Social Media Experiment Part 2

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Interestingly, the robin’s are back with a new batch of 4 eggs in the same nest. I hadn’t removed my webcam so I just needed to power everything back up to take pictures every minute. I was very surprised about this.

This time I decided to host the images through Flickr. The nice thing is Flickr provides you with a private email address which you can email your pictures and they automatically appear in your Flickr photostream.

The images from my Axis 2100 webcam are uploaded every minute to my home FTP server. I then wrote a quick 10 line script which emails these pictures every minute to my Flickr account. So the pictures on Flickr are basically live. The direct photostream address is and you can also pull it up as a full screen slideshow which is great at

There are many Flick “widgets” which allow you to display the most recent pictures on external websites. We used an HTML based widget to display the 10 most recent pictures to and also to the mobile version of the website at

As I am sending a picture every minute between 5am to 10pm, this results in over 1,000 pictures being uploaded daily to the Flickr account. I ended up needing to subscribe to a Pro account on Flickr at a cost of $25/yr which allows for unlimited uploads. This is a huge cost savings compared to trying to store, host, and serve all of those images from the website. Bandwidth on websites can add up quickly. It also gives you access to the Flickr tools and support.

We will see how this experiment goes using this alternative social network. I am guessing the eggs were laid the last week of June which means hatching should occur sometime next week (around July 13th). Already there are some neat pictures being captured by the camera.

Getting this project going was a lot quicker and less work than the original BirdCam website. Making use of the social networking tools that are at our disposal, many of them free, is the way to share this with everyone. We will still look at putting together some time lapsed & live videos to YouTube along with Facebook posts.


The #BirdCam Social Media Experiment Final Recap

The #BirdCam Social Media Experiment Final Recap

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The #BirdCam Experiment has come to an end. As you all know I was fortunate enough to spot a robin’s nest on May 22nd in our yard in a location conducive for having a webcam mounted. The eggs hatched on June 3rd and the 4 baby robin’s left on June 16th.


  • May 18-21 Eggs laid
  • June 2-4 Eggs hatched
  • June 9 Open eyes
  • June 12 Standing up, spread wings
  • June 15 Jumping around nest
  • June 16 Baby robins left nest

Here is a final recap video just completed with highlights of the project, amazing pictures, and time lapsed videos:

The website is still available to view:

  • 19 Videos (time lapse, live, news)
  • Archive pictures
  • Favorite pictures
  • All-time favorites
  • Fun facts



#BirdCam: How does it work?

#BirdCam: How does it work?

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I will take you through the 5 steps to get pictures of the nest over to a public webserver on the Internet.


  • The Yard Shed
  • The Garage
  • The House
  • The Internet
  • The WebServer

The Yard Shed

This is where it all begins! Mother nature is generating unique content for us to try and capture the moment to enjoy.

Many years ago at the beginning of this millenia, I obtained a very inexpensive webcam ($60) on eBay that I have used for a variety of applications. The model I chose was an Axis 2100 for the reason that it supported the ability to schedule taking sequential pictures (time lapse) between certain times and automatically upload these picture files to a network server.

The dilemma for me was creating reliable connectivity back to our house where our Internet connection is located. Due to the heavy amount of foliage and elevation changes on our property, my preference was a “wired” solution vs a “wireless” solution. A wireless solution would have introduced issues with installing external antennas and dealing with interference and reliability.

Being that a wired solution was chosen to connect back to our home network, this involved running a network cable through the bush from the shed up to the nearest building which is our garage. The total cable length of cat5 ended up being 297 feet (90.5 meters) which is very close to maximum length.

Outside the Shed

Power extension cables were also run which we use for other things in the yard. The cat5 cable was run through a loose section of conduit we had lying around to help prevent it from being crushed.

The Garage

The cat5 cable from the yard shed was terminated into a DLink DHP302 powerline adapter (ethernet over power). The power from our garage is a subpanel off our main house panel, therefore I was able to get a signal to work through the powerline adapters.

Essentially it is like extending the ethernet cat5 cable from one location to the other, using your electrical cables that are run. It does this by using frequencies higher than the 60Hz range used by north american power.

Networking from Garage

The House

In the house near my main ethernet switch is a matching DLink DHP302 powerline adapter. This helps provide a connection to the extended network outside (yard shed via garage) to our home network.

Once connected to the main home network, this allows a connection to my home server and to the Internet.

My home fileserver is FreeBSD (a flavour of unix). Anything can work that supports an FTP server (where the Axis camera deposits the pictures every minute) and rsync (more on this in “The Internet”) would do the trick. You could use a Mac or Windows box as well. Note that this machines needs to be on all the time for the pictures to be “collected”.

The Internet

Due to the unreliability of the Internet, I decided to have images go to my home server as an intermediate instead of directly to the public webserver. I wanted to minimize the possibility of losing photos.

To syncronize the directory of images between my home server and the webserver on the Internet, I used a fantastic program called “rsync”. This program allows the ability essentially “mirror” a file directory between 2 different servers. Thus only requiring to transfer any new photos that were captured by the webcam. I run this “rsync” utility every minute which helps keep things near realtime for viewing images on the public website.

The Web Server

The idea was to keep it a light and simple website consisting of a single page. No menu or no navigation required. The images appear in a subdirectory of the website so it was very easy using a quick PHP script to always display the most recent image.

The images being uploaded by the webcam are named with the date and time as part of the filename, and in a manner that is easily sortable. This is a feature of the Axis 2100 when uploading sequential images on a schedule.

Everything up to this point was accomplished within a single afternoon as time was of the essence. My kids discovered the nest on Saturday, on Sunday a light bulb began to flicker in my mind’s eye, and then on holiday Monday I put in my quick implementation.

Tuesday morning, back to work, I had a meeting with my staff showing them this great opportunity we have which was uber time sensitive. By mid afternoon they had created version 1.0 of the website such that it was somewhat appealing and had many of the social networking hooks.

It has since been a work in progress as we receive feedback from people visiting the website. It has exploded since going live Tuesday. Wednesday evening I was contacted by several news agencies and Thursday a segment appeared for the 6 o’clock news.

We are implementing new features such as picture favorites, photo archive, time lapsed videos, and much more.

This has been (and continues to be as of writing this) a great experiment to incorporate nature, technology, and social media.