Time-lapse videos are just fun to do. With the popularity of Go-Pro and DSLR cameras, we were looking for way to pan 360 degrees, automatically. We found some expensive gadgets, like the Bescor MP101 Video Motorized Pan Head, for about $125, that works great, or even the new Camalapse, which looks pretty cool, but still runs about $25.
Here’s what Wikipedia says about Time Lapse Photography:
Time-lapse photography is a technique whereby the frequency at which film frames are captured (the frame rate) is much lower than that used to view the sequence. When played at normal speed, time appears to be moving faster and thus lapsing. For example, an image of a scene may be captured once every second, then played back at 30 frames per second. The result is an apparent 30-times speed increase. Time-lapse photography can be considered the opposite of high speed photography or slow motion.
Processes that would normally appear subtle to the human eye, e.g. the motion of the sun and stars in the sky, become very pronounced. Time-lapse is the extreme version of the cinematography technique of undercranking, and can be confused with stop motion animation.
Here is a great-looking, and very easy to make DIY time-lapse panning motor project for $14.