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New addition to my truck setup
malaki86
For those of you that know my setup, you already know that I have it running so that people (well, my dad) can see exactly where I'm at. He simply uses Google Earth, which has my data uploaded to. With the weather turned on in GE, he can get an idea of what I'm driving through.

Well, one thing that I've always wanted was the ability to automatically send him photo's of what the road condition is in front of me. I can't do streaming video because of bandwidth limitations, but JPG's would be fine.

Last night I found a program called TinCam. This software can be setup so that it'll automatically take a new photo at a specified interval - I set it for 15 mins, but that's subject to change. After it takes the photo, it creates a web page which will show a history of photo's, plus the newest one and uploads it to a web server.

I've already got the software setup so that it'll automatically start up when I run my front-end software, Centrafuse. When I close Centrafuse, it'll then automatically close down the TinCam software. The reason I did this is that I only use Centrafuse when I'm driving. If I'm parked for the night, there's no need to take a photo of a tree in a rest area every 15 minutes.

Centrafuse has the ability to automatically run programs whenever it loads or exits, so that was easy. TinCam doesn't have an easy way of closing it from another program, so I had to use the built-in TaskKill program that's in XP & Vista: "c:\windows\system32\taskkill.exe /im tincam.exe".

Once I get the webcam mounted on the dash of my truck and get a few photo's on my site, I'll post the link to it here.
malaki86
I also just found something new - basically it's a DVR for the webcam. You can set it so that it constantly records. Once the file limit is reached, it starts over-writing the file. This can come in invaluable in the event of an accident.

The software is still in development, but I'm going to follow it closely. I'll have to add a 2nd webcam to use it, but they're cheap now anyway.
malaki86
Got it up and running. I'll let it run a day or 2 before I post the site, but here's an example that it took this morning:

The photo has a slight tilt on it because of where I had to mount it in the truck (on top of my cb). It makes it look like I'm going in a constant banked turn - lol
Attached Images
tincam07.jpg  
Marvin Hlavac
malaki86, the picture was not showing up in the posting, so I uploaded it as an attachment. But it only shows the date and time, nothing else.

Interesting project, though.
Ken in Regina
Looks like that famous picture of a polar bear eating a marshmallow in a snowstorm.

...ken...
glennw
Keep working on it.
I'm interested in seeing the results. Not sure for what, but I might find a use for it someday.
Marvin Hlavac
... also, other than time and date, is it possible to overlay your speed?
malaki86
The reason the only thing anything shows up on that photo was because I was driving on a snow covered roads, while it was a heavy snow. The ground was completely snow-covered and the sky was a bright grey. The camera couldn't adjust the exposure enough to actually see anything.

I wish I could get it to overlay additional info, such as the longitude/latitude, city, state, speed and direction of travel. However the program has nothing to do with the gps whatsoever.

There's also an issue with the program not being able to send out the photos when there's no internet connection. It doesn't cache the photo's whatsoever.
tcassidy
What about the polar bear?

How can it be a DVR if it doesn't cache the photos. Or is that a different program?

Terry
malaki86
The DVR one is a different program. The one I'm using now only takes photo's.
Marvin Hlavac
Will the DVR software allow you to overlay speed, latitude / longitude, time, date, etc?
SpadesFlush
Are you sure there's no polar bear in that shot? I thought I saw something...
malaki86
To be honest, I'm not sure what all the DVR one will have the ability to do. They're still working on it. I think on one of the screenshots of it I saw, it had the longitude & latitude on it, and possibly the city & state.
malaki86
After using the program for a day, I already see a couple of changes I need to make.

1 - When the program snapped the photo and tried to upload it, if there was no internet connection, that photo got "lost". I've since switched to another method of uploading the files, which if there's no internet connection, it'll send it the next time around.

2 - I'm wanting to find a new type of photo gallery - one that'll have the ability to show more photo's, but without loading every image full size on one page. I just need to find one that will use every image file that's in a specific folder on a website.

3 - If I can find #2, then I'll change it so that it'll basically have unlimited photo's saved. With the current version, it has a max of 100 history photo's. I'd hate to see the size of the page with 100 640x480 images on it, though.
glennw
Most of the people on another forum I follow, use webshots.com, some use photobucket.com. There is another that a lot of people use, but I can't remember it right now.
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