The longest stream on the Internet will end in August. FogCam broadcasts a view of San Francisco for 25 years in a row

The oldest webcam in the world has become too expensive to maintain.

Screenshot from FogCam website

In San Francisco, the camera will be turned off, which has been broadcasting a view of the city from the local university campus for 25 years in a row. The authors of the FogCam project will finish the stream on August 30. They told the SF Gate about this .

The oldest live webcam was launched in 1994 by Jeff Schwartz and Dan Wong. In those days, they were students of the University of San Francisco and installed a camera on the campus of the institution.

According to Schwartz, for him it was an experiment when he studied programming. He was inspired by the project Trojan Room Coffee Pot – a webcam that was installed in 1991 to monitor a coffee pot at the University of Cambridge. Researchers broadcast the image of the coffee pot on the Internet and could check if it contained coffee before leaving the laboratory.

For 25 years, Schwartz and Wong copied the idea several times and directed FogCam towards the cafe on the campus so that anyone could keep track of how many people are in the line for food. However, most of the time the camera looked at a street covered in fog.

It was just a small hobby project that got its own life. People liked it, so we continued. Our webcam is a return to the early days of the Internet, when anyone could do anything.

Jeff Schwartz

one of the initiators of FogCam

Unlike modern webcams, FogCam does not support continuous data transfer. The camera sends an image every 20 seconds.

Schwartz and Wong decided to turn off the camera after 25 years of work, so as not to think about problems with its support. According to them, the last straw was that they no longer have a really good view or place to install the camera.

The university tolerates us, but they do not really support us, so we need to look for safe places ourselves.

Jeff Schwartz

one of the initiators of FogCam

Schwartz explained that the authors will keep the FogCam site “for posterity”. He noted that he did not know whether the University of San Francisco would agree to host a new version of FogCam.

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