Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Boston Public Twvee visits Occupy Boston

October 30, 2011

The boston public twvee broadcaster cart has been to visit Occupy Boston on a few days.
Here are some compilation vids from those days.

boston public twvee hits north cambridge


boston area workshops

October 11, 2011

have a space in the boston area? academic or community space of any sort? want to set up a broadcaster or want to set up a workshop to show people how to make public media appliances? we’d love to help.

send us an email and we’ll make it happen in a jiffy.



How to layer/remix videos with free command line tools

May 18, 2010

This tutorial assumes you know a little bit about script files. All files have some editing that is required before executing and knowing a little bit about a couple parameters really expands what you can do with them. That said, it’s really not too hard and we’re happy to answer basic questions.

Video Overview: (which you can definitely skip)

FFmpeg (OS X howto), video utility, format conversions, etc.
Imagemagick:all kinds of image processing goodness. Like a command line version of GIMP or photoshop.
Sox: Audio processing.

We’ve used all of these programs on both Linux and Mac. Linux installs are pretty easy with package managers (apt-get, yum, etc). Mac is little more work for ffmpeg and imagemagick but not too tough.

[Optional] VideoDownloadHelper: Firefox plugin that allows you to download easily from lots of video sharing sites in mp4 and flv format at a variety of resolutions. There are Linux command line downloaders as well but we haven’t tried that yet…

GET SOME MOVIES Maybe you take them with your own camera, maybe you download from online. You’ve probably got a bunch floating around your hard drive already. Start with short ones. Feel free to grab some from, or any other broadcaster, all are public domain.

mkdir frames
ffmpeg -i yourvideoA.avi frames/A%4d.jpg
ffmpeg -i yourvideoB.avi frames/B%4d.jpg

This will export individual frames of the video to A0001.jpg, A0002.jpg, etc
For longer videos you might need to use A%5d.jpg or A%6d.jpg but start with small videos first.

This is where ImageMagick comes in handy. ImageMagick can do all kinds of image manipulations. We will give you a few examples.

Blending two movies on top of one another. Copy the following code into a file called and make it executable[type chmod 755 at the command line].

# boranj!
counter=10000 # initialize counter
for f in A*.jpg; do # step through frames
let "counter+=1" # increment counter
# apply some Imagemagick effects to the 2 images and write a new image
composite -blend 50 A${counter:1}.jpg B${counter:1}.jpg -matte ./mixedFrame${counter:1}.jpg
#Use FFMPEG to make frames into a movie again
ffmpeg -r 30 -sameq -i mixedFrame%4d.jpg ../outputmovie$DATETIME.mp4

Now you will have a movie with no sound that will look something like this:

After using the above script file, you will have a movie with no sound. You can add the soundtrack of your choice, or add the mixed audio from the original movies.
To extract audio from the original movies and sum it back together:

ffmpeg -i movA.mp4 movAsound.wav
ffmpeg -i movB.mp4 movBsound.wav
sox -m movAsound.wav movBsound.wav mixed.mp3

Add audio back to your movie:
ffmpeg -i movNoSound.mp4 -sameq -i mixed.mp3 -ab 192k movSound.mp4


Wavy overlay: Script file.

and similar example with more slices.
For this example, you need to create a mix image first. That is done with this line.
convert -size 640x480 gradient: -evaluate sin 20 wave_gradient.png

Place it in an appropriate location and make sure it’s correctly reference in your script file.
This type of combination has all kinds of options. You can take this a lot of other places if you wish to dig deeper. See this forum post and this usage examples page.

Four movie grid montage: Script File.

Six panel version of same effect.

Lots of other possibilities if you poke around Fred’s Imagemagick scripts as well.

Let us know what you come up with.

Brooklyn Mobile Update

February 4, 2010

First ten days with Brooklyn Mobile, 1h17m.
[ ?posts_id=3057217&dest=-1]

A video from yesterday, Feb 3, 2010.

brooklyn mobile is up and running

November 3, 2009

Brooklyn mobile

brooklyn mobile broadcaster up and running.
youtube channel is up.

make softlink on computer. check.
set directory in check.
set keys and logins in
upload a test video. get a cart. make box for laptop
get external mouse.

get out on the street and collect some videos. day one complete. most people ignore it or don’t know what to think of it.
a little weirdness with the uploader, some news from fulton mall security guard that i need a special license but he also thinks its a great idea. more to come… in the meantime, get yourself a belt.

public timelapse wall and shell scripting stuff.

October 22, 2009 works!

weird bash not found error in mac terminal
but i am having a weird error on mac os x running some shell scripts. i am a complete newbie at this and this question concerns 2 scripts. one of which sean wrote ( a couple weeks ago and it’s been running fine on another machine.

then last week i wrote and it has been running fine on a couple computers.
but then i tried to run on a new machine that runs fine and i got the following error:

: No such file or directory#!/bin/bash

why will one script( execute fine and the other ( gives this weird bash error?
but then i saw they had different first lines.

one is /bin/sh and one is /bin/bash

weird thing to because the one that doesn’t work on this machine (/bin/bash) has been working fine on the other broadcaster mac min for several weeks. scripts still very mysterious to me.

so i change it so #!/bin/sh and #! /bin/sh still no go…

: No such file or directory#!/bin/sh
: command not foundline 2:
: command not foundline 5:
: command not foundline 7:
: command not foundline 9:
‘/ line 72: syntax error near unexpected token `do
‘/ line 72: `for f in *.mp4; do

another thing i tried as suggested:
bash -ex ./
‘ ‘#!/bin/sh
: No such file or directory#!/bin/sh
Clarence$ bash -ex ./
‘ ‘#!/bin/bash
: No such file or directory#!/bin/bash
Clarence$ echo $SHELL

two screenshots of terminal and some other discussion of the error
weird bash not found error in mac terminal
scripting error, #!/bin/bash not found?

gottesman broadcaster up and running

October 8, 2009

“what is it?”
“it’s like teachers college what’s goin on?”

it’s not universally understood but in good time.

here is the twitter feed:

computer seems to hang a bit after a day of video recording.
auto shutdown each night should fix this?
need to figure out how to make it reboot and have the mouse positioned correctly and the photobooth setting on video. i think this should be able to be accomplished with automator. will be researching this next.

broadcasting from apple store

August 17, 2009

broadcaster project is up and running! (sort of)


This little dude Nicholi has shot dozens of lip sync videos at the 5th Avenue Apple Store. And why not? Plenty of desktops. Free wi-fi. Solid tech support.

we love this.

Hello world!

July 27, 2009

Welcome to This is your first post. Edit or delete it and start blogging!