Internet-Controllable Halloween Display - Tonight!
This year, my Halloween "decorations" involve putting out a single red "party bulb" on the front porch. And I might put on a hat. In any case, I'm just letting my natural spookiness carry the evening...which is why I'm pleased to tell you that Alek Komarnitsky's front yard is awesome. Komarnitsky has rigged up his Colorado home with an unbelievable array of lights, inflatable monsters, and other spooky stuff. But the best part is you can control all that stuff online.
Yes, during prime trick-or-treating hours (starting at 5pm MDT), Komarnitsky enables control buttons that let you mess with the lights and decorations, as multiple webcams let you watch the action live. Even now, with nothing happening and all the controls disabled, I'm watching the grass grow on his front lawn with 75 other people. Imagine how rad this will get when actual trick-or-treaters wander up and we all start clicking the "Hulk GRRRRR!!" button. Komarnitsky explains:
You can not only view the 10,000 lights and inflatables via three webcams, but you can control them - i.e. inflate/deflate the giant Frankenstein, Pumpkins, Grim Reaper, Skull, Headless Horseman, SpongeBob SquarePants, and Homer Simpson - D'OH! ;-)
The design of the page is hilariously geeky, a GeoCities-esque collection of Comic Sans, animations that follow your cursor, and plenty of animated GIFs. (Though, unlike GeoCities, it actually works!) Not only is the site fun, it's for a good cause -- Komarnitsky is encouraging visitors to support Celiac Disease research, and has raised over $75,000 for the cause already. Now enjoy the show.
If you miss tonight's display, don't worry -- the big show is Christmas, and even when there's no special event running, you can watch the grass grow. Here's one more view of the yard, from a few weeks back when snow covered the Halloween display (the snow has since melted):
Image courtesy of Alek Komarnitsky