In order to make an interesting Raspberry Pi project, James Wolf decided to base it upon the Raspberry Pi camera board. He conceived to design a point and shoot camera with a simple mechanism which could run on batteries with a Wi-Fi connection. In this project, the connection to the button was established with the help of a proto board. For this, he followed the Adafruit tutorial that explained the use of buttons with Raspberry Pi.
Before starting the process, he carried on all the required installations like Raspbian, raspi-fig on the camera, GPIO, and FTP. Besides he also upgraded Raspberry Pi and run the required python file. As far as the hardware section was concerned, he acquired a Raspberry Pi, Raspberry Pi camera board, button board with the button from Radioshack, a case for the Pi and a ribbon cable.
First, he cut the ribbon cable and wired it to the prototype board. It consists of a pull-up resistor and a GPIO pin for each button. Then he wired the buttons to the Raspberry Pi using an example from an Adafruit tutorial. After that, he went on to make a USB cable by cutting a part of a longer USB cable. At this point, the user has to make sure that the wire is thick enough to carry the required amount of current that would power the Raspberry Pi.
Then he added a line of code to the LXDE autostart file to make sure that the application starts on every boot. In the next step, he entered the required command which started the camera.py application.
So after getting done with all the hardware and software part, he put everything inside the case. Then he inserted the USB cable into the port and connected it to the Enercell battery which was evidently the only external part of the camera. Once charged, this battery could last for 3-4 hours. The end product could be connected to Wi-Fi and also carried an HDMI port which allowed it to be plugged into a TV set in order to flip through the photos captured by the camera. It also contained a port for FTP which enabled James to view the images on a local network as and when they were captured by the device.
Apparently, this was a pin and shoot camera that resembled a pinhole camera which was devoid of any view finder or a TFT screen. Interestingly, these kinds of cameras are used for surveillance purpose whereby the target cannot be viewed while the images are being
captured. When James pushed the button, the camera was turned on which was denoted by a flash of red light and the device was ready to capture the images. Finally, his efforts led towards building a wireless camera powered by Raspberry Pi which could point and shoot.
Later, in an effort to add a screen to it, he installed the PyGame on the Raspberry Pi and made changes in the coding. Thus he was able to add an Adafruit TFT display to the device which was powered from the Raspberry Pi GPIO header. This time, the camera could show the view in front of it and then took shots. Anybody can make an attempt to build a DIY point and shoot camera from a Raspberry Pi camera board. For guidance, here is the video which clearly explains the functioning in detail.
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