Autonomous Surveillance Camera

An interesting project for the house in Hawaii – something totally exciting because it's easy to use, yet very marketable. Something I would need myself, and something I absolutely know how to build. It's the perfect project for the time after I quit, hopefully tomorrow.

My frustration with surveillance of my place in Ninole is growing. I never have the slightest idea in what state the house is, and it's something I'd really like to know. The problem is that I have no power here, not Internet connection outside of Verizon Wireless, so it's not easy to get a camera installed.

The idea is to combine three things:

  • A standard webcam to take pictures
  • A standard power generating device, like wind or solar
  • A standard network connection, like VW WAN or WiFi

Combine the three with a Linux computer and a little software, and voila, you have a remote surveillance camera.

Well, not really, you still need two more things: a computer that runs the whole setup (of course using Linux, with which I have made wonderful experiences), and a web service that allows you to set the configuration for the camera and that accepts the camera's pictures.

It's a hot idea: you configure the little device, install it, and then you run off to your web site to check on your camera. Of course, if something malfunctions you are screwed, but after all, you bought the best camera on the market for precisely that reason!!!

The device is perfect for anyone that needs a camera outdoors – do you need to check on your chickens? Want to know who's at the front gate of your compound? Interested in freeway traffic? I think it's a really wonderful opportunity, especially because the need for service is automatic. 

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