Saturday, September 19, 2009

Fun with the Mencoder Command

On July 14, 2005 the cities of Charleston and Mt Pleasant SC celebrated the opening of the Arthur Ravenel Jr Bridge with a magnificent fireworks show. I snapped over 400 pictures that night. I published the photos to my website The next day the photos went viral. The site went down for a few hours while I negotiated extra bandwidth with my web hosting provider. Good times.

Recently while exploring video encoding on my Ubuntu 8.10 Linux computer I ran across the mencoder command. One of the many things you can do with the mencoder command is create videos from images.

My 400 fireworks photos are compiled at 15 per second in the video below. Enjoy the next 28 seconds.

Below is the command syntax I used to create this video.

mencoder "mf://*.jpg" -mf fps=15 -o output.avi -ovc lavc -lavcopts vcodec=mpeg4

I'm frequently amazed by the free and open source Linux operating system Ubuntu. If it can be done with software it can be done on Linux and at no cost to the user.

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