This felt rather special. Out for an evening meander around the garden in the muggy dusk warmth. Then a familiar churring. Very close. Surely not. Surely I’ve not got a Long-tailed tit roost. That would be rather lovely.
Mr Mittens, Willow, a hedgehog, but mostly just gorgeous birdsong.
This blog gets its name from the Katsura tree. One of my favourite trees. Walking around the garden this evening the sunlight catches the delicate leaves fluttering in the breeze.
I can’t keep up with video embedding in WordPress. It changes, it breaks, I try and keep things simple.
A few tests to embed video from flickr and zenfolio. These are mp4 files created by motion for a Vivotek IP webcam.
Zenfolio: Using the Share Embed Code
This is using the embed code from the Share option in Zenfolio. Need to be logged into zenfolio. The code is added to the page (Gutenberg editor) using the Custom HTML option in the Formatting section. The embed code that Zenfolio supplies is:
<p><iframe src="//www.zenfolio.com/zf/core/embedvideo.aspx?p=c9dd8a90.11" width="800" height="500" frameborder="0"></iframe></p>
This seems to work ok on desktop, Firefox. But no ability to play full-screen or link through to original on zenfolio. Also not so sure about the responsiveness on a smartphone. In fact looks a bit broken overall on iPhone.
Zenfolio: Direct link to video
This is using the Share option available to the owner when logged into Zenfolio. There’s a range of sizes/qualities linking to the original mp4. Quality differences not that relevant for a webcam but I’ve used the best one anyway. In the following example I’ve used the Video option under Common Blocks and selected Insert from URL.
This seems to work as good as the embedded code but with perhaps a bit more buffering. You can click through to full-size, but not to the original zenfolio page. And still pretty broken on an iPhone.
Flickr: Using the Share Embed Code
Like the zenfolio example above, this uses the Share option available only when logged in. The Embed code, added using the Custom HTML option is:
<a data-flickr-embed="true" data-header="true" data-footer="true" href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/djnisbet/32746907647/" title="phoenix - gardenpath - event5177 - Tue 23 Apr 2019 - 0748 - 32s930ms(no sound)"><img src="https://live.staticflickr.com/31337/32746907647_b91a271a6b_o.jpg" width="1280" height="800" alt="phoenix - gardenpath - event5177 - Tue 23 Apr 2019 - 0748 - 32s930ms(no sound)"></a><script async src="//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
On Firefox (66.0.3 (64-bit)) running on Debian (Private Window and Cookies Cleared) this gives:
This also happens under Firefox (Windows 10), whereas Edge has a bold overlay that states: This type of video file isn’t supported. This is the same video file that I uploaded to both Flickr and Zenfolio, so presumably they are handled, stored or delivered in some subtly different way.
Flickr: Using the built-in Gutendberg Embeds
Well this is interesting. Is there a difference between pre and post Smugmug Flickr? A lot of migration has been going on after SmugMug bought Flickr, and I wonder if it’s videos either side of that migration that are causing the fun.
Here’s some iPhone footage taken on the River Wear in Feb 2018. It seems fine using the Flickr Embed option.
Flickr: iPhone video uploaded in Feb 2018
Now here’s some iPhone footage, (same iPhone), taken recently and uploaded to Flickr. Using the same Flickr Embed option.
Same Camera, same embedding technique. One works, the other doesn’t. The only difference is the time they were uploaded. Let’s try that test again.
Here’s another clip from the garden path webcam from Jan 2019. And it works fine.
Finally a couple of examples using the photonic plugin. Same story. It works for video uploaded before the migration, but not after.
and after …
Time and Patience are not waiting for me and my experience of Flickr has always been exasperating. I had a legacy Pro account but with the acquisition by SmugMug the cost of that has jumped and I don’t think it’s worth the money. I’ll probably not renew my Flickr Pro subscription in May and stick with Zenfolio. My Vimeo Plus was great for its video sharing but a bit of an overkill for people like me who just want to potter about with smartphones and webcams. But then, the money saved by not paying for Flickr. Hmmm ….
Cats are a worry. On the one hand we want to let them come and go as they please so they can go out, play, chase mice, climb trees, and be cats. The trouble is, they go out, play, chase mice, climb trees, and get into all sorts of scrapes. Being cats.
The real worry is not seeing them for days on end though. Brothers Willow and Mr Mittens like the summer. In the summertime, when the weather is fine, they go and talk to the students, pretending to be unloved and unfed. It’s only by putting webcams on their feeding bowls and bed that we realised they still lived with us.
On a recent holiday we left the cats at home with a homesitter as normal. But on four separate days we had phone calls from Chapel Heights, from alarmed students who’d found Willow mooching around their flats. As the crow flies Chapel Heights is only a few hundred metres from our house, but it’s near a busy dual carriageway and Willow doesn’t have any road sense.
I’ve tried a tech approach. Tile works ok. But its range is short and its use is limited. So now I’m trying another tech approach.
You’d think there’d be tons of tech for monitoring your pets. And there is, but it’s still a maturing market and there’s a long way to go. Trackers for dogs seem a lot more common than those for cats, which makes a lot of sense. The devices are still quite bulky and cats a quite small.
Half an hour ago I attached a Findster Duo to Willow’s collar. It’s light, but bulky, but he seems ok with it. I took it off its supplied strap and threaded Willows collar onto it directly. Let’s see how it goes.
I’m surprised I haven’t noticed this before. Out cycling yesterday on a quiet lane I heard crackling from the vergeside. Like a gently smouldering wood fire. Mystified at first, I soon realised the sounds were from the seed pods of Ulex Europaeas (Gorse) crackling in the midday heat.