Saturday, November 16, 2019

Not Better, Just Smaller

Part of my security cam project involves setting up a video screen that'll display a live feed of my front door cam (whenever I get around to installing that). I don't want the screen to be running 24/7 so I've been tinkering with making a motion activated IR blaster to turn it on only when I'm around.

I've got the PIR working, the IR code for the power button decoded and reproduced, and the phototransistor hooked up and running so that I can have the screen time out quicker when it's dark vs when it's light. I'm at the point where I can basically put it all together, but I'm holding off a little before I solder things together on a board until I figure out how exactly I'm going to build a little cabinet to hold/disguise the screen.

I'm still muddling through trying to figure out how to get my chromebit to display a live feed from the camera. You'd think it's a simple task, but all the technologies available have been built around other use cases like broadcasting a tv show to the internet (with, like, 30 seconds of delay), or doing videoconferencing (structured around peer-to-peer connections) so there's quite a few square holes for me to try to drive this round peg into. Kinda frustrating. Add on top of that my dislike of javascript and html and, well, things could be going better.

Anyway, playing around on the hardware side is still lots of fun. The Arduino board is a lot like playing with my old Apple ][, just with less RAM and more disk/non-volatile space. Lots of I/O pins to wire up circuit bits to, and a refreshingly simple API to write code against. I like it.

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