Instructables

Motionactivated camera that sends pic via phone???

excuse me I'm green here but my brother said this is the place to ask... There are a lot of game cameras for capturing game pics. These are set up around game trails, feeders ect to capture pics of animals(bigfoots) coming and going. They are set in the field and checked periodicly. No big deal if you live close by but there are areas I'd like to check on 100 miles from me. Plus these cames are suject to being stolen.Some one is now making one that send the pic to a website via a Tmoble acct. A great idea, pics are sent when they are taken ( a thief cannot walk home with is photo under his arm). But... $500?? plus acct. activation? and a serparate website? nuts In reviewing the stuff here and failing to find or ask properly...i know there is talent here to create somthing that will work and send the pics directly to an individual email acct. The cheepest digital game cam is $60 at walmart, I figure a cheep pay as you go cell phone and viola! except I'm better at fixing boats. If anyone can put me on the right track to simplifing this I would appriciate it. Thanks cw

VIRON7 years ago
First, Forget everything you know, it's wrong. Second, consider hiding the available products from thieves. (Easiest, Cheapest, Quickest) Third, bust the Digital Myth, because analog and digital cameras (webcams too) actually use the same lenses and CCD chips! Fourth, do you know how to set up a surveillance camera to a monitor or a TV, and maybe a recording device? Fifth, have you ever watched TV with an aerial, and used a VCR? Sixth, a motion sensor works like a switch, just like other sensors. Perhaps send a beep on the audio channel when it triggers. On the other end, use a sound sensor to take a picture. (That's not as easy as it sounds, but not too hard either.) Seventh, back to aerial, use a UHF modulator to send the picture from the remote location. A high gain directional beam antenna helps. Eighth, I think maybe we're done. What good is a complicated PC here? If you know, then just do it! So far, no service provider is necessarily involved! Perhaps... Put the PC close to the camera and just stream it away online! But, As far as I'm concerned, it's the slowest part of the mouse trap, which gives the "mouse" plenty of time to get away. You might rather put a wifi cam out there, because you still believe in the digital myth, and wifi is conveniently linked to that PC. And maybe you think there are camera thieves walking around with analog TV's instead of wifi-enabled devices, tuning their UHF knobs, looking for cameras to steal. So put up decoys then.
usabarber VIRON4 years ago
Perhaps you can answer me. Is is possible to change the frames on a security camera or game camera using some sort of a remote device? Are you aware of any form of transmitters that are wireless, small, and blinks red and or white? You seem to be very knowledgable and I would be grateful to you for your help. Thank you, usabarber
VIRON usabarber4 years ago
A lot has changed at least around me since the beginning of this thread.
Now it comes down to what is the simplest thing that can be done with
whatever is available. Analog used to be very consistent, and digital is
very inconsistent when it comes to DIY projects and parts.
It hasn't actually gotten any harder to transmit images though, starting
from scratch.
Primitive FAX machines were invented to transmit images even before 
simple telephones existed in the 1800s. Surely something could be 
rigged up today to do the job with less effort even if, more or less, the 
modern technology seems too specific-purposes oriented
What I mean by that is , for example, analog security cameras can be more 
easily used for unintended purposes than a cell phone with a built-in 
camera, or a web-cam, where any new use must be an "app" or a "feature".

Specific answers:
Its possible to change the frame rate to match something, even if by 
disassembling and re-assembling the camera and display and re-
designing them to match. Worthwhile? Sometimes maybe.
Which is better to invest in the result; Time to create it or Money to buy it?
(Many recent camera and display parts are almost microscopic and nearly
impossible to assemble by hand.)

Remote control can be very generic, so its not much of a problem.

A laser pointer or LED can provide surprise transmit range in line of sight,
but not very well for ordinary video. Occasional snapshots can be sent
efficiently at a slower rate than video, like FAX in a worst case situation.
Most legal radio modules have much less range than light beams.

Blinking colored lights are common and have been for a hundred years,
so they are not much of a problem.
You forgot that he is at least 100 miles away. A lazer beam with a unobstructed line-of-sight that far? Unlikely.
VIRON VIRON7 years ago
I forgot an important detail here above: If the camera is so remote that it MUST be wireless and solar-charged, it should only be turned on momentarily by the motion sensor so that it doesn't waste all of it's limited power and bandwidth when no pictures are being taken.
Invent6 years ago
What about a laptop powered by 12 volt battery, charged by solar panel. Add a webcam, and an air card. Set up a few rules to have the air card connect at specific times, then remotely take over the laptop. Would this work?
That kinda defeats the whole price thing. Unless you could get an old donor laptop...
Aaaaah. This is a pretty old thread. I wonder if anyone is still reading it. Oh well. Apologies to everyone for such a late entry, but this project sounds too fun to pass up. Late or not, I had to throw in my hat. Having read what seaweaver wrote, I can say that what he wants would be fairly easy to implement pretty much exactly the way he described it, with one addition. Add in a cheap programmable device like a BASIC Stamp or even just a PIC chip. Crack open the cell phone and hook up wires to the buttons here would press to take a picture with his cell phone. An NPN transistor would work pretty well as a button bypasser that could be activated by a single pin from the preferred controller to simulate pressing a button. On my Samsung, I'd only need to bypass three buttons: the shutter button, the on/off button, and the select button. My email is already programmed into my phone, so taking a picture and firing off is pretty straightforward. Then the next thing is to teach the PIC to push that button sequence capture a picture and send it, including powering the phone up and down. Hack a motion detector to send a signal to the controller. The controller turns on the phone, snap a picture, sends it to his email account, and powers down again. Programming in BASIC is as easy as it comes, so that part is almost trivial, except for tweaking the program for delays. The phone would be the most expensive component, and he might want to power it with a couple of six volt lantern batteries or a motorcycle battery for longer life. The only caveat, besides weather issues, would be whether or not the area he was working has adequate cell coverage. Other than that, it sounds bone simple. Just my nuisance two cents. :)
bar00296 years ago
(removed by author or community request)
Tried it. Epic Fail. It only works if they give you full permissions on their phone. Even then, their phone will vibrate like hell as you try to do it.
acer737 years ago
Most webcams come with software for this and they will upload it FTP but im not sure for the phone.
rickick acer737 years ago
would it not depend on he phone
jefinny7 years ago
I am here, any CCTV camera demand, you can find on www.cctvrekeen.com
pekar7 years ago
Some thoughts...
http://www.supercircuits.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWPROD&ProdID=5494
http://www.geeks.com/details.asp?invtid=DIGI-MOTION-DETECT
These products might give you some ideas.
Both require an external camera, but they are cheap. If you added a wireless transmitter, you could hide the recorder in a different spot than the camera.
a bigger issue might be how to power them for extended periods.
Any remote camera will require periodic servicing.
I'm not sure that transmission via cell phone is ideal. depends on what you're actually trying to do, I guess.
You could consider a webcam/wireless option too, if remote monitoring is your goal.
I just wish the digital camera manufacturers would add motion detectors to a point and shoot, so captures could be higher resolution than these "security cameras" offer.
Pekar
DO_NOT_TRY7 years ago
if anyone can think of one ill give them props on all of the popular groups i no.
username7 years ago
liking those options viron. still having concerns about providing power and signal range though. this is going to be placed out in the "sticks" aprox. 30 miles from the point of monitoring. RIght now we are just brainstorming to cover options so keep em comin Thanks Again for your interest and expertise
Hopefully I am not too late. I know a little bit about this subject. I have made several digital game cameras using pre-buit boards and soldering the inside on the cameras to this board. This part is not too dificult and can probably be done for cheaper than what I made it for. Some of these websites should give you a decent start. As far as hooking up a cell phone/camera instead of a regular digital camera. I have thought about making one of these myself but have just started learning about how electrical decives work and if I have anything else I will be more than happy to help.
http://www.jesseshunting.com/site/homebrew-cams.html
http://www.fieldpix.com/
username7 years ago
Viron Thanks for your response you have added a different perspective that i do apppreciate. "digital myth", "forgetting everything I know" ....dude...your cool....I like your posts... but........................... ......I'd be more than happy to go analog. If I can get it all to fit in to nothing bigger than a bread box (power included), not cost more than the option in the orig. post , and be able to transfer images (not nec. when they're orig. taken) up to 10+ miles. I to believe in KISS. Hence the original concept of a $cheap cam phone (trac) loadded with a few minutes for ups. (ie prebuilt, low $). Only cant fig. how with just a phone to wire a cam call (ir, etc. to take photo) or set some kind of sched. to up photo bank. Im/we're open to all sugg., those of analog or dig. variety. Any instructable pointer from the archive would also be helpful. Thanks again.
VIRON username7 years ago
What you want is a video bug. Think 007 James Bond.
You said you did surveillance.
This is famous from a few years ago:
X-10 Cam
It can be cheaper and better because the digital is Flattening
the analog market. Soon they'll be throwing away the analog video stuff!
Tiny cameras are easily $25-$50. Look here:
CCTV Marlin P Jones
Tiny UHFTV transmitters, don't know the best price,
although an electronics store had a clearance for $25 last year.
I think VCR's are that cheap too, but also found in the trash.
TV's are that cheap, and in the trash.

If trac phones with cameras are this cheap with service,
go ahead and hack them to do this.
VIRON VIRON7 years ago
Obviously you will ask how to hack the phone. Well it depends on what you have to do to take and send a picture. The mechanism that is triggered by the motion sensor must, and may, by electronic or mechanical means, push the buttons that turn on the phone and take a picture and send it and turn it off. That could involve external buttons and a cam mechanism, or similarly electric contacts on a wheel which is called sheet-metal logic, used in washing machines and for the lighting sequence of amusement park rides and neon signs, or the modern technique that many of us would use would be programming a "basic stamp" to bypass (virtually push) the right buttons in order. Whatever you have and that you can use that's simple and works is good.
username7 years ago
Hello all.... Im the brother.?(cant quite get that to sound right) As I explained to my bro. if its plausible... it can be done (more or less) Thoughts... mini-itx with webcam running server (gotta luv nix) using cheap cell as modem to sync/upload to static webpage. Be great if we could hack a phones prog. to manage all (ie cellcam, upload) but I'v had only a little exp. doing SEEM edits. Either way ... IR trigger would be needed to take photo before image is saved and either uploaded asap or on cron sched. Power- Batteries, Solar, etc. Any suggestions etc? I mean think slap cellcam to wall walk away. Get images from distance. Just seems pretty cool on mobile platform. Note: mobility is key I have worked with tcp/ip surv. in past but this would be BadA for the cheap
VIRON username7 years ago
It looks like you know what you do need, but are confused by what you don't.
KnivesOut7 years ago
Why a cell as modem instead of a 3G card of some type and a mini itx with a PCMCIA slot, or a gumstix?
seaweaver (author) 7 years ago
yes a cheep phone might not have the capability. The camera has a usb port for data transfer and a SD card for storage/trans. My brother just gave me the camera(www.wildviewcam.com) for my BD and it's in the woods now w/ just the internal 16M sdram. I'm gonna pull it today to see how it works as there are alot of hogs where I set it up. I have'nt been keeping up w/ cell phones as I've always had a great plan, and seemingly indistructable nokia. It makes and recives calls and thats it. After years of watching people fight their new gadjit phones and fume about their plans I just stopped paying attention.I do not know about any data ports in the new phones,code pics are sent in, ect. i suppose the phone would have to prompted to check for new pics and send them unless it could be programed to to auto send when a new file has been made. Either way it's better than driving 2 hours to the country or 30 minutes in the boat to monitor game activity.(so long as it can be implemented for less than the current offering)I'm to manage our club this year and will be setting up feed plots, stands ect. We are implimenting a Quality management plan to improve all game on the property so this would be a method of collecting almost real time data. We have had a huge number of turkeys this past deer season which will result in an increase in Coyote and Bobcats which are already hurting the deer.By collecting data on what is where, I can relay that info via pics to other members that are skeptics about the damage the varmints are creating, and to the members who specialize in hunting them. I could simply invest in whats availabe to the market, but that would mean an increase in dues which never is taken lightly. The Taxes on acreage in Ga is going thru the roof.
mark1017 years ago
people with cell phones(with cameras inside) can send photos to people right? the phone Co. charges for that? do they go phone to phone, or phone to internet? how would you get the digital data out of the $60 camera, and how would you get it into the cheap cell phone? Then the cheap phone is not programmable to send on its own decision making ability.
wackyvorlon7 years ago
What do you know in terms of electronics? Any experience at all?
seaweaver (author)  wackyvorlon7 years ago
I was an electrician for some years and did control wiring....in the 80's ,took a course in DC.Distroyed a 125 in 1 Science fair kit in my youth, had a room w/ somany wires I was chewing on one while I was wiring some stereo Bamm.110 in the mouth... But most of the new stuff..little but I can follow directions good. My brother is more IC ready. cw