The PumpCam! FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)


Table of Contents

  1. What is a webcam?
  2. What equipment do you use?
  3. What can we expect to see?
  4. Why doesn't the picture move?
  5. Your image is not changing!
  6. Why can't I hit reload to make the picture change?
  7. What is the remote cam for?
  8. There is no ICQ or other chat. Why?
  1. Why are you doing this? It's weird!
  2. Will the PumpCam always be free?
  3. Can we send you stuff?
  4. Mailing Address
  5. Shouldn't you be posing for us?
  6. You are too serious for me and you don't smile enough!
  7. Is it hot there? You are always in your underwear!
  8. When are you going to get naked?
  9. Can you hit a pose just for me?
  10. I'm coming to Philly. Can I see you?
  11. Why are you doing this? It's weird!

What is a webcam?

A webcam is a video camera that is connected to a computer in a way that allows images to be transferred or uploaded to a web server where they can be accessed by any one with a browser. The video information can be captured at pre-determined intervals by a video capture card in a computer. The video can be a series of static pictures or real time compressed streaming video.

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What equipment do you use?

My camera has been a regular camcorder. I don't like the "quickcams" the picture quality is not that good and you can't usually zoom. VHF-C or 8mm camcorders offer the best image quality under a wide variety of lighting situations. I have the SONY Handycam (TR517) that sits on a tripod usually and is connected by up to a 75  foot audio video cable to a Radio Shack video amp/distribution box that is connected to a video switcher box. The second video source can be another camera or a VCR  that is also connected to the video switch. I can switch between the cam and pre-recorded video by pushing a button. All of this is plugged into the  PC  via the Matrox Rainbow Runner Studio video card and Matrox TV Tuner card. This decision was made because I already use the Matrox Mystique 220 and found that this combo would be most compatible for my PC. My PC is an old Zeos Pantera 90 that I removed the Pentium 90  from  and replaced with a Pentium 133. There is 48 Megs of ram installed and about 13 GB of hard drive storage. The operating system is Win 98 and I use Microsoft FrontPage 2000 as well as NetObjects Fusion to design the pages. Dreamweaver and Flash are also available for me to design with. The software that does all of the work is Neal Kolban's Webcam32 software. It only costs $25.00 and worked flawlessly upon installation.

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What can we expect to see?

Hmm? I'm really not sure yet. I was inspired to do a webcam after visiting many of the web sites online.

I was most intrigued and inspired by Thomas Su and his ThomOnTheNet web site. Thom's cam is on 24/7 and has two views. Thom  is always working or studying. Watching him on his cam so hard at work encouraged me to take on this ambitious project of revamping my old web site. I had Thom up in a remote Java window while I was toiling away with web design. It paid off. Thanks Thom!

Now getting back to the question of what you can expect to see. Well I'm not sure if there are any other bodybuilders with webcam. I might be the first. I figured I could practice my posing on the cam and it would be sort of like having an audience. So you will see posing when sometime depending on my schedule and contest preparation times. You will probably see me doing abdominal work on my Swiss ball and pre-recorded gym workouts and bodybuilding competitions. I know you will see me in front of the PC a lot because that is where I spend a great deal of time. All of this webmaster work and working out to get into shape for my next competition requires that I get sleep. So you will sometimes see me sleep. There is no schedule for the PumpCam! For now it is kind of sporadic. It' just a glimpse into a small part of my life. Not acted or rehearsed.

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Why doesn't the picture move?

This is not real time video and there is no audio. This would require too much bandwidth. Bandwidth is the measure of how much data you can transfer. Most home PC's with slow 56K or 28.8K modems are much too slow to handle all of this data. The webcam takes an image from the camera every 30 seconds or so converts the video frame to a JPEG file and uploads it to this web site so you can view them in your browser. If you look at the caption on each picture you can see the date and time of the video capture and there is an indicator under the picture that tells you when the next update is going to occur. I'm thinking about having live streaming video from time to time.

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Your image is not changing!

The image might not be changing for several reasons. The number one reason might be that I'm not online. If the PumpCam! is not on, the picture will not update even if there is a countdown. Sometimes it's the browser. It's a good idea to sometimes clear your browsers cache before trying to access the PumpCam! There is a known problem with Netscape in that it will pull a picture from it's cache rather than retrieve the next new image from  the web site. Another culprit is net traffic and sluggish response from my or your ISP. With 56K technology the downloads are faster than the uploads so you may miss a few frames here or there.

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Why can't I hit reload to make the picture change?

Hitting reload on your browser does not load the next picture and does not speed up the image update. What can happen if too many people hit reload or refresh is that the server will slow to a crawl or shut down from all of the requests. Try clearing your browsers cache first. Then let the counter count down at least twice to see if the picture updates. Check to see if I’m on line. If I am not on line the you will see most likely see a splash page with a message that says off line. Please don’t sit watching this non-changing image as it contributes to wasted bandwidth and I get charged extra for bandwidth beyond a pre-set level. Come back later. In the future a schedule may be posted.

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What is the remote cam for?

This can be misleading. When you click for a remote image this does not mean that you are activating another cam so that you can see me elsewhere. J This is just a smaller floating window that let’s you browse the rest of the my site or another site while watching the PumpCam! You can not save images from this cam because it is a JavaScript remote. I am working on a floating non-JavaScript remote so that pics can be saved and for compatibility with WebTV.

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There is no ICQ or other chat. Why?

The main reason that there is not a chat window like ICQ is that chatting can be time consuming and I don’t usually take requests for posing, waving, and holding up messages. I cannot put you on my buddy list or send you an e-mail to notify you when the cam is on. You are not the only guest viewing. I don’t always have a lot of free time. It takes a lot of time just to answer e-mail, maintain the site and be somewhat entertaining. I also work 8 hours or more a day in addition to working out to get ready for competitions. I hope you understand. Sometimes guests will attempt to "chat" through e-mail. This is not a problem as sometimes I have my mail program running. But I only answer these at my discretion. Please be advised that if you send rude messages and requests for nudity or send mail with an invalid e-mail address you will be blocked and your e-mail will be trashed!

It pays to be courteous and mannerly. Ninety-nine percent of the responses I get fall into this category. Sometimes I can be reached via AOL instant messenger depending on how much free time I have. My name is "PUMPTUP." The same rules above apply to instant messaging. Rudeness will not be tolerated. If you get blocked or I don’t respond and you feel as though you were being a good netizen, I’m not being mean, I’m just too busy to answer. Try again later. If you are cool I might give you my ICQ number. :-)

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Why are you doing this? It's weird!

Hmmm… I Bet you are still watching! I thought so too at first. If you visited my first web site you will find from my writing that I am very open about my life. The PumpCam! Is just an extension of that. You can now get a glimpse into my life in picture form. By watching the cam and reading the caption that appears on each picture you can tell what I am thinking, what foods I’m eating even what CD’s I’m listening to. You will find that I have an off season where my body is not as cut and defined as they are on most photos on the page. I do get fat! I do have my playful moments good days and bad days. You will see this. I do have totally private moments and you won’t see this on the cam. Sorry.

A few sharp viewers have noticed things in the room and about me. You might too. I realize that there is an exhibitionist/voyeur dynamic involved here but I am comfortable with it.

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Will the PumpCam always be free?

Good question. For now yes! I have a shopping section where you can support the site by purchasing books, music and other items through an arrangement with Amazon.com. I will be offering photos and other items to help support the cost of the site. I don’t like to have advertisement banners because they distract the viewer and slow down page loading. (However by the time this FAQ is published banners may already be present.) My web site has always been a free site and I would like to keep it that way. However, while  it maybe free for you my guests it is not free for me to run the site. It takes time and money to run a web site like this one. Now with the extra sections more graphics and the PumpCam! my data transfer rate from hits on the page have quadrupled. I will first come up with ways to alleviate the bandwidth problem. When this is exhausted. I will probably have to make the PumpCam! members only. You will have to request access. If that doesn't work I will either take the cam off the site or have a low yearly membership fee that will entitle you to other advanced features. Hopefully I will get enough support from the existing framework in place.

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Can we send you stuff?

I get this question a lot. Hmmm? Never thought about that one before. Sure, why not! I have been asked if I would wear a T-shirt from a certain gym and some one wanted to send me boxers to wear while on cam. I don’t see any harm in this. I just ask that clothing items be clean.  I wear medium to large T-shirts and medium boxer/briefs. If you want to send your picture or video, that is cool too. With your permission I will put your photos in a visitors gallery. You may e-mail a photo, or if  you don't have a scanner I will scan it for you and send your original back. If you have a good posing or workout video I will feature you on the PumpCam! Do you write? Send in an article if you would like. For more info about me and the latest news check out my journal.

E-mail: kchbrown@earthlink.net

Mailing Address:

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Why do you sit mostly in front of PC? Shouldn't you be posing for us?

I am sitting in front of the computer because that is where I do most of my work. I will pose when I have the time. Just because the cam is on it does not mean I am going to be posing all of the time. Actually, I do a lot of posing on cam you must have missed it.

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You are too serious for me and you don't smile enough!

Do you smile and laugh all the time while you are working alone? You do? Uh oh! Yes I am serious but I do have my playful moments.

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Is it hot there? You are always in your underwear.

I like this question! It is pretty warm here on the upper floor. I get a lot of sun it helps heat the house. Since I am the only one here I am in my underwear a great deal. Besides it’s more comfortable and I love underwear.

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When are you going to get naked?

There is sometimes naturally occurring nudity. This is my home after all! However, you will not see frontal nudity for the sake of frontal nudity. That’s not what this site is about.

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Can you hit a pose just for me?

Maybe. Not really. Don't ask, but if I have the time and I'm not busy...

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I am coming to Philadelphia. Can I see you?

No, not really. It depends...

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Why are you doing this? It's weird!

Not this question again!!! 

 

More questions and answers coming........

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Kevin C. Brown
Copyright 1996 - 2001 Maximal Fitness. All rights reserved.
Revised: April 20, 2002.