Keeping a Constant Eye on the Kremlin

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As we speak there is a camera monitoring St. Basil's cathedral and the southeast corner of the Kremlin, taking pictures of the area every 60 seconds and storing them in an archive.

But this is no spy operation set up by the FSB — its just Mosenergo's web cam taking pictures for the KremlinKam web site ( www.kremlinkam.com).

Since 1997, the capital's main power provider has been operating the gadget — an electronic camera that snaps an image from the same place at set intervals — in its building across the Moscow River from the cathedral.

The sophisticated camera takes a picture of the historic area every minute, and the image can be seen at the site.

The camera itself is located at a height of 30 meters atop the Mosenergo building.

The company founded the web site along with Multi-Page in 1997 for a total cost of only $15,000, making it several digits short of the budget many other online projects required.

But the site has more than just the Kremlin's picture.

With text available in both English and Russian, KremlinKam gives up-to-date information such as the dollar/ruble exchange rate and the Moscow air temperature — which scrolls across the base of the centerpiece Kremlin image.

For those who have never been to Moscow, there is a full description of what you are looking at, and detailed maps of the Kremlin and other visible landmarks are included.

It's sure to get any tourist planning a trip to Russia's capital excited about what's in store.

As well as a guest book and section for visitors to leave their comments, KremlinKam also lets you send off electronic postcards using any one of the archived images from the site's history.

There's also a great list of links to other web cams all over the globe.

That's right — if you know to the minute what time you will be standing in front of St. Basil's, you can leave you cameras at home and send you're image all over the world via KremlinKam.

http://www.kremlinkam.com KremlinKam