What 377,444 YouTube Views Taught Me

Have you seen my time lapse video from this weekend’s blizzard? I pressed a tiny GoPro camera up against a windowed door looking at the deck and took a shot every minute until the lens was blocked by snow. As I type this, YouTube says it’s passed 377,444 hits!

Are you serious? 377k! That’s viral, right?

Maybe viral videos ‘happen’, but this one was given a little push. Saturday night it was retweeted by the Wall Street Journal’s weather reporter and Weather Underground. Both have large followings of weather weenies, the perfect audience for this type of video.

From there it was off to the races. It had nearly 100,000 views Saturday, 87,000 Sunday, 60,000 Monday and another 100,000 Tuesday. The more people watched the more they told their friends.

Phase two began Sunday at 6:50 AM when Good Morning America called. They had seen the video somehow and wanted to use it on the portion of the show not seen in Connecticut. In their defense they didn’t know that.

How the hell did they get my number?

By the end of the weekend my time lapse had run on CNN, Fox News, CBS, NBC and The Weather Channel. Local affiliates were running the video which was now on their feeds. That’s Univision on the left.

I’m told it ran on Channel 8. Shocker, they didn’t mention my name.

I answered an email giving permission to APTN in London who passed it to their subscribers. I made friends with Alex who wanted to run it on the German equivalent of the Weather Channel. Ditto for the French Canadian version.

The more hits I got the more requests I got. My video was posted on the website for Paris Match and the Australian and NineMSN in Sydney. Joe.ie posted a link in Ireland as did websites across the rest of Europe and South America. Even my beloved NY Times linked to the video on their site.

This was pretty heady stuff, but not everything went swimmingly. I got an email from Jeff Hertrick at National Geographic.

Hi Geoff:
In scanning for interesting snow videos, I found a dude ripping off your video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSklSj8LblU

Thought you’d like to know. Hope you can make him cease and desist. We deal with Pirates constantly here at Nat Geo.

Jeff is one of the Internet’s good guys.

I sent a DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) takedown notice to YouTube. It took three days for them to act. That video’s gone as are 50,000 or so views that went to someone other than me.

Other sites pulled the video from YouTube then ran it in their own player, taking away traffic and notoriety from me. Gawker–I’m talking about you (and others).

Oh, National Geographic’s site linked to the video too.

The comments on YouTube were great the first few days, but by Tuesday spammers had also entered the picture. Faux commenters were using my traffic to publicize their websites–usually porn. I played whack-a-mole as best I could. I think they’re gone now.

Over the next few days the traffic will die down. A blizzard is only hot so long. I’m curious to see how the traffic will play out over the long run.

Very cool.

Doppler Helps Measure The Snow!

Doppler, our 9.5 pound Maltese rescue, was at a loss until Helaine dug a trench

There’s now a 40″ snow report from our town, Hamden. I can believe it. The snow is deeper than anything I’ve ever seen before and I lived in Buffalo for four years!

Of course this presents a logistical dilemma. Doppler is approximately short. Our snow piles are approximately ginormous.

We’d convinced Doppler to piddle on our top step, but that was as far as she’d go. Twenty four hours have passed since… well, you know.

Because of my back surgery last summer (how long will this excuse last) Helaine dug a trench then an arena. Doppler was pleased. Though she usually has a full lawn at her disposal (for her disposal) she was glad to get what she got.

Naming rights to Doppler’s arena are available to the highest bidder. Act now, hopefully it won’t be here long.

2013 Blizzard Snow Totals For Connecticut (updated)

This post has been updated with the final totals from NWS. If your town actually had more or less… well, I’m just the messenger

Just in case you’re wondering here are the Connecticut snow totals as of 7:30 AM, Saturday. It’s still snowing and accumulating in Eastern Connecticut, so the final totals could be higher.

I was just out, It’s surreal. We have 2.5 feet easily in Hamden. I have never seen anything like this, even in Buffalo.

Just don’t call it Nemo… or Charlotte.

********************STORM TOTAL SNOWFALL********************  
LOCATION          STORM TOTAL     TIME/DATE   COMMENTS                     
                     SNOWFALL           OF   
                     /INCHES/   MEASUREMENT  
   FAIRFIELD             35.0  1000 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   STRATFORD             33.0  1030 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   MONROE                30.0   900 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   BRIDGEPORT            30.0   658 AM  2/09  COOP OBSERVER             
   SHELTON               26.5   700 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   WESTON                26.5   800 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   WESTPORT              24.5   645 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   GREENWICH             22.5   900 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   DARIEN                22.1   500 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   NORWALK               22.0   730 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   ROXBURY               22.0   800 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   NEW CANAAN            22.0   600 AM  2/09  CT DOT                    
   DANBURY               21.5  1200 PM  2/09  CT DOT                    
   STAMFORD              19.0  1100 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   NEWTOWN               17.1  1000 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   BETHEL                16.0   800 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   RIDGEFIELD            12.0   800 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                          
   GLASTONBURY           33.5   326 PM  2/09  GENERAL PUBLIC
   MANCHESTER            32.0  1030 AM  2/09  TRAINED SPOTTER
   WEATOGUE              31.0  1012 AM  2/09  HAM RADIO
   FARMINGTON            29.0   918 AM  2/09  HAM RADIO
   GRANBY                29.0   938 AM  2/09  NWS EMPLOYEE
   NEWINGTON             28.0  1240 PM  2/09  GENERAL PUBLIC
   BURLINGTON            27.5   902 AM  2/09  TRAINED SPOTTER
   2 SE ENFIELD          27.2   700 AM  2/09  COCORAHS
   1 WSW WETHERSFIELD    27.0   900 AM  2/09  COCORAHS
   HARTFORD              27.0   929 AM  2/09  HAM RADIO
   CANTON                26.0   956 AM  2/09  NONE
   NORTH GRANBY          25.0   610 AM  2/09  TRAINED SPOTTER
   AVON                  25.0   239 AM  2/09  HAM RADIO
   1 ENE NORTH GRANBY    25.0   900 AM  2/09  COCORAHS
   WEST HARTFORD         24.5   218 AM  2/09  HAM RADIO
   3 NNW WEST HARTFORD   24.3   730 AM  2/09  COCORAHS
   BRISTOL               24.0   908 AM  2/09  TRAINED SPOTTER
   SIMSBURY              24.0   618 AM  2/09  HAM RADIO
   COLLINSVILLE          23.5   806 AM  2/09  NONE
   WINDSOR               23.0   700 AM  2/09  COCORAHS
   SOUTH WINDSOR         23.0  1250 PM  2/09  NONE
   WINDSOR LOCKS         22.8   108 PM  2/09  BDL AIRPORT
   NNW UNIONVILLE        22.3   705 AM  2/09  COCORAHS
   ASHFORD               22.0   931 AM  2/09  HAM RADIO
   EAST HARTFORD         20.0   621 AM  2/09  HAM RADIO
   ENFIELD               20.0   620 AM  2/09  HAM RADIO

   NEW HARTFORD          33.0  1044 AM  2/09  SPOTTER
   BAKERSVILLE           28.0   700 AM  2/09  CO-OP OBSERVER
   TORRINGTON            28.0   834 AM  2/09  FACEBOOK
   WINSTED               25.0   818 AM  2/09  SPOTTER
   NEW PRESTON           25.0   830 AM  2/09  PUBLIC
   THOMASTON             23.0   600 AM  2/09  CT DOT
   HARWINTON             23.0   952 AM  2/09  AMATEUR RADIO
   ROXBURY               22.0   952 AM  2/09  AMATEUR RADIO
   NORFOLK               17.2   800 AM  2/09  CO-OP OBSERVER
   LITCHFIELD            16.0   600 AM  2/09  CT DOT
   CORNWALL              12.0   951 AM  2/09  AMATEUR RADIO
   NORTH CANAAN          11.0   600 AM  2/09  CT DOT

   EAST HADDAM           35.5   845 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   OLD SAYBROOK          30.0  1200 PM  2/09  CT DOT                    
   CLINTON               27.5   800 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   HADDAM                27.0  1200 PM  2/09  CT DOT                    
   HIGGANUM              24.0   700 AM  2/09  AMATEUR RADIO             
   CROMWELL              23.0   700 AM  2/09  AMATEUR RADIO             
   MIDDLETOWN            12.0  1200 PM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   HAMDEN                40.0   100 PM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   MILFORD               38.0   615 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   CLINTONVILLE          37.0  1040 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   OXFORD                36.2   600 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   NORTH BRANFORD        36.0  1100 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   MERIDEN               36.0   200 PM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   YALESVILLE            35.0   909 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   WALLINGFORD           35.0   700 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   NEW HAVEN             34.3   600 AM  2/09  CT DOT                    
   WEST HAVEN            34.0  1040 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   NORTHFORD             33.5   950 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   WOLCOTT               33.0   457 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   EAST HAVEN            33.0  1005 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   GUILFORD              33.0  1113 AM  2/09  BROADCAST MEDIA           
   NORTH GUILFORD        32.0   900 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   WATERBURY             32.0   900 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   MADISON               32.0   321 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   NAUGATUCK             30.0   600 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   NORTH HAVEN           29.0   950 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   BRANFORD              28.0   700 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   SOUTHBURY             26.3  1030 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   NORTH BRANDFORD       24.0  1230 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   BEACON FALLS          21.0  1200 PM  2/09  CT DOT                                   
   COLCHESTER            31.0  1200 PM  2/09  CT DOT                    
   GILMAN                27.0   600 AM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   NORWICH               25.0   600 AM  2/09  CT DOT                    
   LISBON                24.0  1158 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   GALES FERRY           24.0  1045 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   OLD LYME              23.6  1200 PM  2/09  PUBLIC                    
   LEDYARD CENTER        22.0  1045 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER           
   MYSTIC SEAPORT        21.0  1100 AM  2/09  NWS EMPLOYEE              
   STONINGTON            15.0   900 AM  2/09  SKYWARN SPOTTER    

   COVENTRY              32.5  1143 AM  2/09  TRAINED SPOTTER
   STAFFORDVILLE         31.4   100 PM  2/09  NWS COOP
   TOLLAND               30.5   914 AM  2/09  GENERAL PUBLIC
   SOMERS                25.5   646 AM  2/09  TRAINED SPOTTER
   VERNON                25.0   402 AM  2/09  HAM RADIO

   EAST KILLINGLY        26.0  1105 AM  2/09  NONE
   WOODSTOCK             26.0  1026 AM  2/09  TRAINED SPOTTER
   THOMPSON              25.5  1008 AM  2/09  TRAINED SPOTTER
   HAMPTON               25.0   829 AM  2/09  COOP OBSERVER
   ASHFORD               24.0   828 AM  2/09  GENERAL PUBLIC
   1 SW EAST KILLINGLY   23.1   800 AM  2/09  COCORAHS
   DANIELSON             22.5   933 AM  2/09  HAM RADIO
   POMFRET CENTER        22.0  1114 AM  2/09  TRAINED SPOTTER

Accumulations are courtesy of the National Weather Service offices in Taunton, MA and Upton and Albany, NY.

My Blizzard Of 2013 Timelapse

Helaine got me a GoPro Hero for my birthday. It’s a very small, nearly indestructible, video camera. They have been dropped by sky and scuba divers and survived.

This time lapse starts just after 6:00 AM and goes past 11:00 PM. It stops because there’s nothing left to see!

There are a bunch of web postings saying the GoPro’s battery is only good for 2.5 hours of timeslapse. That’s why I plugged it into an AC adapter and propped it up against a glass paneled door to the deck.

It’s Pouring Snow – The Video

Take a look at the snow as it pours off my roof. By this time we had about a foot of blowing, featureless snow! There are drifts against doors, windows and walls.

Taken inside during the Blizzard of 2013.

The Truth About Bombogenesis

7pm weather observations

I just heard a loud clap of thunder here in Hamden. Thundersnow! This low is bombing out. Bombogenesis!

Bombogenesis really is a word! It describes the explosive growth of a low pressure system. We’re seeing it right now, especially in Eastern Connecticut.

Deb Drake @debirlfan @geofffox FYI, thundersnow in Quaker Hill. Scared the dog. 🙂

Thundersnow, a product of bombogenesis, was reported at Bridgeport, New Haven and New London between 6:30 and 7:30 PM EST. Yes, that’s very unusual. It’s also been reported at Marshfield, MA, Providence and Westerly, RI and on the Cape at Otis AFB.

Bombogenesis is an extreme example of cyclogenesis. I know, little help.

Cyclogenesis is the development or rapid intensification of a low pressure system. In New England we see this as winter lows hit the relatively mild waters of the Atlantic. If the cyclogenesis really goes nuts it’s bombogenesis!

This explosive development is seen as a rapid drop of the central barometric pressure.

Wind is reflective of a change in barometer over a given distance. The bigger the change over a given distance the stronger the wind. If the central pressure drops and everything else stay the same the pressure difference between two distant points (we call it pressure gradient or delta) will increase. So does the wind!

Over the rest of tonight, as the storm continues to ‘bomb’ we’ll see the pressure gradient increase. Even as the storm moves away from us this gradient will continue to deliver very strong winds. East of us, like the Massachusetts coast, the wind will be even stronger!

The rest of the forecast looks on target. We’ll be in-and-out of blizzard conditions throughout the overnight hours. Finally accumulations will be measured in feet across New England.

If you’re looking at weather observations and notice snow no longer being reported, sensors at a few airports have iced over and are out of service. This wasn’t a problem when humans did the observing.

Stay put and you should be OK. There will be power outages, but you’re better staying where you are than venturing out.