- First there's Photoboof, a mobile Burning Man project that dispenses actual photos as well as (later) uploading digital ones. (Warning, insanely slow server.)
I don't know the technical details about how either of these work, but if we ever do get around to building one of these ourselves, here's what I was thinking:
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- There's a big wooden box with a seat in it, probably upstairs next to coat check.
- There's a CRT monitor in the box, and a USB webcam, behind plexi.
- Bouncing text on the screen says "press button to begin".
- There's a big red button, wired up to a cannibalized mouse.
- Pressing the button tells the software to:
- Trip a relay to turn on a 100 watt bulb;
- Display a live video image, and a 5 second countdown;
- Take a picture;
- Turn off the lightbulb;
- Display the picture for 30 seconds, or until the button is pressed again.
- Then the image gets uploaded to the web site.
I know that most digital still cameras can be remote-controlled via USB, but I think a webcam and a lightbulb is probably sufficient; I doubt we need a "real" flash for this.
Hardcopy printouts would be nice, but too much of a hassle. Printers have a lot of moving parts in them, and I'd need this thing to be bulletproof and require pretty much zero maintenance for it to be worth the hassle.
I guess it's traditional for photo booths to take 3 or 4 pictures in a row, so maybe it should do that instead.
The main reason I never started messing around with this is that it involves one of my least favorite things in the whole wide world, talking to devices from Linux. E.g., I don't have the slightest idea what webcams are well supported by Linux, and the thought of even trying to figure that out makes me nauseous.